Although many travelers are disgruntled with constant increases in airline fees while services are being cut, there are good changes that go unnoticed. Business class was once seen as the primary source of revenue, but the economy cabin is becoming increasingly important for driving the bottom line. Economy-class is getting better as airlines are introducing new amenities and finding creative ways to improve the in-flight experience. The ultimate goal is to lure budget-conscious customers with the smallest details. Here are our picks for top economy-class innovations:
New Seating Design: New slimmed down seats for increased legroom and comfort are making way across fleets throughout the industry. For Lufthansa, its economy-class seats are upgraded with simple and slim seats designed by Recaro. Magazine pockets shifted from knee height to behind the tray table, increasing legroom. For Qantas, new seats designed by Marc Newson feature movable bases that recline as the back does. There is also a foot hammock, which helps blood circulation.
Skycouch: Air New Zealand’s innovative Economy Skycouch is a row of three economy seats that can be converted into a couch. Armrests flip all the way back, and footrests on each seat flip up. Many travelers enjoy turning it into a comfortable bed. It’s great for those who can’t afford to upgrade out from coach but want the extra space.
Entertainment: Australian carrier Jetstar has stocked its aircraft with integrated iPad brackets. These brackets can be snapped onto the back of the front seat, creating a TV-like screen. For passengers who don’t have iPads, Jetstar offers in-flight rentals for $8.40. One particularly impressive innovation is Singapore Airlines’ KrisWorld entertainment system, which includes 80 on-demand movies, 180 TV programs, a dozen radio channels, and Dolby headphones.
Luxury Toilets: Yes, you didn’t read that wrong. All Nippon Airways is introducing luxury toilets for economy-class passengers. Theses bidet-toilets, also known as “Washlets”, are very popular in Japan. Warm and pressurized water jets offer a better clean than single ply paper. These toilets however, are selected for women-only restrooms.
What are your picks for top economy-class innovations? Share your thoughts with us below.
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