Browsing Tag: Premium Economy

An American Airlines 777-300ER (77W) taxis at Los Angeles International Airport (LAX)

An American Airlines 777-300ER (77W) taxis at Los Angeles International Airport (LAX). Will it soon offer a Premium Economy option?

American Airlines is hosting a press conference on Wednesday, January 20, at the world-famous Hollywood Bowl, and AirlineReporter has been invited to attend this special “preview” for the media.

The hook from the invitation: there will be “some very exciting announcements to unveil about their continued growth and expansion in Los Angeles, including new services, partnerships, and programs that will be rolled out in 2016 at LAX and citywide!”

What could this mean? Does American have some big news for flyers… or will it be all fluff and circumstance?

 

An Air France A380 parked at SFO. Photo: John Nguyen | AirlineReporter

Our Air France A380 parked at SFO. Photo: John Nguyen | AirlineReporter

Thanks to Delta, I found a smashing deal to fly an Airbus A380 for the first time, and not in economy! My wife and I were married late last year, but postponed our honeymoon because we wanted to visit Europe during the warmer months.

We lucked out and found a very low fare valid for this past September, from San Francisco to Istanbul, in the Premium Economy section of Delta partner Air France. This would be our first time flying the A380, as well as the first time in decades flying on Air France. I was cautiously optimistic about what flying Premium Economy would be like, and I subscribed to the mantra of, “anything’s better than coach,” or even my flight on a CRJ-200 the day before.

Would I be severely disappointed?

My Ride to Frankfurt - A Condor 767-300ER (D-ABUB)

My ride to Frankfurt, a Condor 767-300ER (reg: D-ABUB)

I recently decided to take a trip over to Frankfurt for a few days and, thankfully, I was able to take it in Premium Economy.

This was going to be my first flight with Condor, and also my first taste of a long-haul leisure carrier (think low-cost, but to vacation destinations).  I was flying on their non-stop service from Seattle to Frankfurt. Adding to the number of firsts for me were also a new airport (Frankfurt) and my first time flying internationally out of Seattle.

The Premium Economy section in Condor's 767

The Premium Economy section in Condor’s 767

The flight was scheduled to depart mid-afternoon, which for me felt a little bit different than normal.  Generally, I end up on flights departing first-thing in the morning or late in the evening.  So having most of the day to relax, make final packing arrangements, and spend time with my wife was a good thing.  The bad part is being prime time for international departures out of Seattle.  This meant that while the line for check-in with Condor was short, even with priority access, security would be an absolute mess.

The Zodiac manufactured seat represents Singapore's entry to the Premium Economy space.

The Zodiac-manufactured seat represents Singapore’s entry to the Premium Economy space – Image: Singapore Airlines

Many of Singapore Airlines‘ Asian and European competitors have entered the premium economy market over the past five years. It’s a growing segment. This left analysts and frequent Singapore passengers wondering if it was going to as well. After all, Singapore’s economy experience has not been anything below top-notch since its creation. Recently though, the airline announced that they would indeed be offering a premium economy product.

Ready to board! Checking out the new interior on this Singapore Airlines 777-300ER at the Boeing Everett Delivery Center.

A Singapore Airlines 777-300ER at the Boeing Everett Delivery Center

“Many of our customers have been asking for a Premium Economy offering and we are confident that what we are delivering will exceed their expectations,” said Singapore Airlines Executive Vice President Commercial, Mr. Mak Swee Wah. “The new cabin product is the culmination of two years of work, which included extensive research and focus group studies involving customers and our design partners.”