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What's Up With Swiss Business Class?  
User currently offlineSsides From United States of America, joined Feb 2001, 4059 posts, RR: 21
Posted (11 years 1 month 6 days 15 hours ago) and read 4068 times:

I just flew Swiss for the first time this weekend. Overall, the flight was enjoyable and comfortable -- loved the cushy leather seats in coach, but wasn't ready to cough up 3 Euros for a can of Coke (I was in economy.) The business class section on both my flights was almost completely empty -- even though that section took up almost half of the A320 cabin. Upon further inspection, I noticed that the business class section was hardly different from coach -- it was a 3-3 configuration, and legroom looked about identical. The seats looked a bit more comfortable, and of course business class travelers don't have to pay for food & drink, but why is there not any more distinction on between the classes on Swiss's A320s? Surely there is more difference on their long-haul fleet.


"Lose" is not spelled with two o's!!!!
10 replies: All unread, jump to last
 
User currently offlineCfalk From , joined Dec 1969, posts, RR:
Reply 1, posted (11 years 1 month 6 days 15 hours ago) and read 4041 times:

The business class section on both my flights was almost completely empty -- even though that section took up almost half of the A320 cabin. Upon further inspection, I noticed that the business class section was hardly different from coach -- it was a 3-3 configuration, and legroom looked about identical.

And you wonder why Business is empty?

I am a holder of a gold card on Swiss, and I don't fly them any more, other than for free tickets.

Charles


User currently offlineSsides From United States of America, joined Feb 2001, 4059 posts, RR: 21
Reply 2, posted (11 years 1 month 6 days 15 hours ago) and read 4021 times:

No, I don't wonder why Business is empty -- I wonder why Swiss uses it to take up half the plane, even though no one will fly in Business because there is virtually no difference. I'm sure not going to pay an extra $100 or $300 for a ticket just to get a Coke and sandwich that would have cost me $10 in coach, that's for damn sure!


"Lose" is not spelled with two o's!!!!
User currently offlinePilatus From Switzerland, joined Aug 1999, 185 posts, RR: 1
Reply 3, posted (11 years 1 month 6 days 15 hours ago) and read 3976 times:

Yes, in the Swiss A320 the Business Class is also 3-3, but the middle seat is being left empty. It's the same with TAP Air Portugal.

User currently offlineCedarjet From United Kingdom, joined May 1999, 8197 posts, RR: 54
Reply 4, posted (11 years 1 month 6 days 15 hours ago) and read 3946 times:

In actual fact, doesn't the partition move, and it's actually the same seating? The only difference is lounge access, better catering and a fully flexible ticket valid on any airline. Business class isn't just about legroom.


fly Saha Air 707s daily from Tehran's downtown Mehrabad to Mashhad, Kish Island and Ahwaz
User currently offlineUnique From Switzerland, joined Mar 2003, 1703 posts, RR: 35
Reply 5, posted (11 years 1 month 6 days 15 hours ago) and read 3924 times:

Maybe the return flight was full in Business Class hence the big amount of seats... Maybe the next leg ex ZRH had a full flight but no time to move the curtain... There could be many reasons, so judging from just one experience isn't representative.

Who knows, Business Class on european flights is maybe going to disappear anyway? It was the same with First Class about 20 years ago. Just my two cents.


User currently offlineSwissBrazil From Switzerland, joined Jul 2003, 160 posts, RR: 0
Reply 6, posted (11 years 1 month 6 days 14 hours ago) and read 3858 times:

"Yes, in the Swiss A320 the Business Class is also 3-3, but the middle seat is being left empty. It's the same with TAP Air Portugal."

wrong: on both airlines the seating is changed to a 3x2 seating. each seat row can be electrically adjusted, one side the middle seat being 'compressed' about 20cm (you can notice these when flying because the tray is smaller) leaving a small gap between the armrests of the 1. and 3. seat.
The opposing seating group of three expand a little bit (across each seat), so at the end you have a 5-across seating with more shoulder room (and that counts for side freedom). Seat pitch is not changed , i.e. is fixed at 34in halfway down the airplane, and then decreases down to 33/31in (31in last row only). Hope this helps clarifiy.

TAP used 3x3 fix seats on the B732 & B733 only, the 'buses' uses the procedure above mentioned.

Rgds,
Fred


User currently offlineBeechcraft From Germany, joined Nov 2003, 828 posts, RR: 41
Reply 7, posted (11 years 1 month 6 days 13 hours ago) and read 3821 times:

hi,
regarding Uniques " Who knows, Business Class on european flights is maybe going to disappear anyway?":
Lufthansa is currently in a Progress of Upgrading it´s Business Class. Not only on Long Haul, but also ( and i think especially ) on Inner German and Inner European Flights. The middle Seat will be blocked for those flights. Also they want to upgrade ther Business Product through additional services. What ever that means...

Denis



That's it! You people have stood in my way long enough. I'm going to clown college!
User currently offlineCfalk From , joined Dec 1969, posts, RR:
Reply 8, posted (11 years 1 month 6 days 12 hours ago) and read 3761 times:

Fred,

That's true, the seats do expand a little bit (we are talking an inch or two). But the seat pitch is still the same, and you basically have the guy in front in your face. Most other airlines in Europe, even if they keep the same seats for business as in first, will at least increase the distance between rows a little.

Secondly, for most high-traffic routes (like GVA-ZRH), Swiss does not collapse that 6th seat, so it's exactly like economy in seat width and pitch and crowded as hell.

Don't get me wrong - my complaint is not that a business passenger must be in a more comfy chair than the rest of the plebians. The main advantage for business travellers of less dense seating is carry-on luggage.

Business travellers nearly always travel with one rolling bag plus a briefcase/computer case, and rarely check bags in. There is little choice for them. They may be travelling onwards to various destinations with little time in between. They may be carrying important documents or presentation materials, or samples. The cannot take the risk, even if it's only a 1% risk, that they will not have their luggage as soon as they arrive at their destination.

If you dense-pack business passengers 3-3 and economy pitch like they do on Swiss (and Swissair since 1995-96 before them) you will quickly run out of overhead space, and the last few business passengers will be told "sorry, but you must check in your bag". This of course is at the very last minute. It happened to me, and of course my bag was NOT at the destination when I got there. Luckily I was staying for more than a day, and it finally arrived.

But in practically every single GVA-ZRH flight that I've taken when the plane was close to full (nearly all the time), I rarely fail to hear some of the last passengers complain about the lack of space, and say something like "I'll never fly Swiss again", when faced with the suddenly increased likelyhood that he will be seperated from his luggage.

I feel that this is one of the reasons why Swissair went into the toilet in the late 90s. Swissair used to have a tremendously successful business class for short range flights. But they pissed off a whole lot of people when they bought the Airbus A320s with small seats (the MD-80s and Fokkers they replaced had great C class seats), and then tried to force the Geneva traffic to transit via Zurich in these cattle cars. Business travellers faced a possible forced separation from their baggage, and a short connection in ZRH to go on to, say, Singapore and onwards to Beijing and Tokyo the next day. I faced such choices, and eventually moved to Lufthansa.

They lost two-thirds of Geneva's traffic due to that mistake, and the likes of Easyjet, KLM, Air France and Lufthansa were glad to take up the slack. I am convinced that if Swissair had not turned their GVA-ZRH business class into cattle cars, they might have survived a lot longer than they did. They lost a good percentage of their business class traffic because of that mistake, and it is business class that brings in the profits.


User currently offlineAA54Heavy From United States of America, joined Nov 2003, 189 posts, RR: 0
Reply 9, posted (11 years 1 month 6 days 11 hours ago) and read 3720 times:

My family was upgraded to Lufthansa "business" class on an A321 from Hamburg to FRA because of some mishaps with some previous connecting flights, and yes, the god damn seats were the same as the ones in the back (3x3 seating, all full). We did get very attentive service for the fairly short flight....but I'm 6'4"....very disappointed


Roger that, turning to our "other" left
User currently offlineKHI747 From United States of America, joined Oct 2000, 1617 posts, RR: 1
Reply 10, posted (11 years 1 month 6 days 10 hours ago) and read 3674 times:

I flew LX last month from LHR-ZRH and i was about to upgrade myself on this short flight to Business but the lady at the Swissport desk said its not worth my 10,000 points....i cant thank her enough because i would have literally wasted those points for nothing more then just free food(which is something you expect on flights anyway!). The seats were EXACTLY the same...i mean EXACTLY.The plane was a A321 and the J class was half the plane but for all i know they could make the whole plane J or the whole plane Y without changing any seats.

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