OttoPylit
Topic Author
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Delta Testing New BusinessElite Cabin Interior

Sun Jul 24, 2005 4:09 am

From the Delta News Network, Delta will begin testing a new international BusinessElite cabin for the 763ER on ATL-MUC routes.



Some customers flying BusinessElite this summer between Atlanta and Munich, Germany, will experience the new 767-300ER cabin interiors, including samples of new seat covers. For the next several weeks, Delta will be testing all-leather seat covers that may be installed next year in Delta's BusinessElite cabins.

Delta's current BusinessElite seats are covered in a combination of leather and fabric. Other cabin interior changes include improved lighting, lavatory enhancements, and new carpets and paneling. These changes are the first in a series of improvements Delta is considering to enhance the travel experience for its international BusinessElite customers.
I don't have a microwave, but I do have a clock that occasionally cooks shit.
 
ConcordeBoy
Posts: 16852
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RE: Delta Testing New BusinessElite Cabin Interior

Sun Jul 24, 2005 4:29 am

Allow me to be the first to say:
About Friggin TIME!!!




That said, DL was one of the pioneers of the First/Business hybrid-- yet now, the C/J offerings of many 3 and 4 class airlines have by and large left DL's product completely in a the dust. Very sad, though understandable, to see

************

As for what's written here, do you have any other non-internal source? J/w.

Can't seem to tell whether they're going to actually be introducing a new seat type, since only the 'cover' seems to be addressed.

[Edited 2005-07-23 21:50:40]
Faire du ciel le plus bel endroit de la terre c'est impossible sans Concorde!
 
B4REAL
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RE: Delta Testing New BusinessElite Cabin Interior

Sun Jul 24, 2005 4:31 am

This is a good step. The biggest issue with BizE, in my opinion, is the way the 767-300ER is configured. I really wish DL went the way CO did with the premium cabin. CO is slightly different as they have BusinessFirst on the 767-200ER and 767-400ER, but the main thing they did is put 5 seats across on the premium cabin. DL put 6 across in the premium cabin, and BizElite seats have only .5 inch more width than coach seats at 18.5 inches. Granted, there is the little table/drink holding space between you and the next seat, and the pitch is superior. But the seat is just too narrow for a premium product IMHO.

I just flew BizE on a DL 777 ATL-CDG and CDG-CVG, and it has a 21 inch seat width, and that made all the difference in the world.

Don't get me wrong the new materials for the BizE cabin is great, but this is my biggest gripe with BizE.
B4REAL, spelled like it sounds
 
ConcordeBoy
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RE: Delta Testing New BusinessElite Cabin Interior

Sun Jul 24, 2005 4:53 am

Quoting B4real (Reply 2):
but this is my biggest gripe with BizE.

and no offense, but I could hardly imagine them being concerned with this....

...particularly considering that they've just recently lowered the premium capacity on the 763ER fleet as is.
Faire du ciel le plus bel endroit de la terre c'est impossible sans Concorde!
 
LawnDart
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RE: Delta Testing New BusinessElite Cabin Interior

Sun Jul 24, 2005 5:45 am

Quoting B4real (Reply 2):
I really wish DL went the way CO did with the premium cabin.

Doesn't CO have 7 across in their 777s? DL only has 6 across. Give and take...besides, only the horizontally challenged would find the current BizElite seat in the 767 to be too narrow.

The upgrade of BizElite is a new, all-leather seat cover on the same frame, similar in concept to the upgrade of the domestic fleet.
 
burnsie28
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RE: Delta Testing New BusinessElite Cabin Interior

Sun Jul 24, 2005 5:49 am

now if NW would just get some new interiors and seats.......
 
dutchjet
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RE: Delta Testing New BusinessElite Cabin Interior

Sun Jul 24, 2005 6:30 am

Quoting LawnDart (Reply 4):

Doesn't CO have 7 across in their 777s? DL only has 6 across. Give and take...besides, only the horizontally challenged would find the current BizElite seat in the 767 to be too narrow.


CO has 2-2-2 (6 accross) Business Class seating on the 777s.

CO has 2-1-2 (5 accross) Business Class seating on the 767s.

And while you may not agree, 6 accross biz class seating on a 767 does result in a rather narrow business class seat, especially when compared to business class offerings of other airlines are larger/wider aircraft. Biz Elite is DL's premium offering (it was intended to be positioned in the market as something better than biz class but lest costly and less extravagent than first, just like CO's BF product) and 6 accross seating on a 767 is big limitation in that respect.
 
DeltaGuy
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RE: Delta Testing New BusinessElite Cabin Interior

Sun Jul 24, 2005 6:45 am

Hey, us non-revs could care less what the seat's made of...I just like the legroom Big grin

DeltaGuy
"The cockpit, what is it?" "It's the little room in the front of the plane where the pilot sits, but that's not importan
 
Alitalia744
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RE: Delta Testing New BusinessElite Cabin Interior

Sun Jul 24, 2005 6:52 am

Rather than bitch about everything wrong with BizE...

I'd like to congratulate Delta for taking steps to improve it's customer's experiences especially given their current financial conditions.

Long live the Widget!
Some see lines, others see between the lines.
 
mats
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RE: Delta Testing New BusinessElite Cabin Interior

Sun Jul 24, 2005 6:56 am

I'm surprised. They've pretty much removed everything from domestic first class--it's pathetic. I'm glad that they're not cutting too much from BusinessElite. I still think it's a good product, even though they took away my favorite "mini" BizElite cabin just behind Door 2. I have such fond memories of flying there.

Above all, I'd rather fly wtih fewer amenities on Delta than in greater luxury on Continental. I still believe that Delta's crews are the very best in the United States--gracious, warm, and approachable with relatively few exceptions. Continental has has a great BusinessFirst product, but their cabin crews don't hold a candle to Delta.
 
OttoPylit
Topic Author
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RE: Delta Testing New BusinessElite Cabin Interior

Sun Jul 24, 2005 6:58 am

Quoting ConcordeBoy (Reply 1):
As for what's written here, do you have any other non-internal source? J/w.

Nah, I don't think it really qualified for a press release.

Quoting B4real (Reply 2):
DL put 6 across in the premium cabin, and BizElite seats have only .5 inch more width than coach seats at 18.5 inches.

I agree. I'm no fat-ass, by any means(sorta), but I find the J/C seats on the 763 to be too narrow for comfort. There is no room to "adjust" when you tail gets tired or sore. If I had the choice for a current BizE seat or an old style L-1011 FC seat, give me the L-10's any day. Those seats were enormously huge and comfortable, even if they don't have the pitch of the BizE seats. I can rarely sleep on an airplane anyway, so it does me no good. The longest flight I have flown on the 777 was a 45 minute JAX-ATL equip sub once, so I didn't get to really "experience" the J/C seat then.

Quoting B4real (Reply 2):
CO is slightly different as they have BusinessFirst on the 767-200ER and 767-400ER,

They also use the 762's and 764's on international routes, whereas Delta's are strictly domestic, except the ATL-LIM flight. Being that the 762's are being retired wouldn't do us much good, and the 764 is to replace the L-10's on the high density, leisure markets(i.e.-Hawaii, Orlando), and the J/C product wouldn't make sense, even though ATL-HNL is longer than ATL-CDG! Go figure!  Yeah sure
I don't have a microwave, but I do have a clock that occasionally cooks shit.
 
Alitalia744
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RE: Delta Testing New BusinessElite Cabin Interior

Sun Jul 24, 2005 7:13 am

Quoting Mats (Reply 9):
Above all, I'd rather fly wtih fewer amenities on Delta than in greater luxury on Continental. I still believe that Delta's crews are the very best in the United States--gracious, warm, and approachable with relatively few exceptions. Continental has has a great BusinessFirst product, but their cabin crews don't hold a candle to Delta.

So true. I have yet to come across someone unpleasant, unfriendly, or unhelpful at Delta. Truly a world-class carrier. It continues to amaze me.

I know Delta doesn't have the newest planes, the nicest interiors or the best food (frankly I hate the snack pack), but they continue to be my favorite airline. Why? Because of the dedicated employees who even in the face of challenge, continue to put a smile on their face and give you the best freaking service they can, even if that means only giving you the entire can of soda.
Some see lines, others see between the lines.
 
skibum9
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RE: Delta Testing New BusinessElite Cabin Interior

Sun Jul 24, 2005 7:15 am

Quoting LawnDart (Reply 4):
only the horizontally challenged would find the current BizElite seat in the 767 to be too narrow.

Excuse me LawnDart....BUT THAT IS A TOTAL B.S. STATEMENT. I have to ask, how many long-haul trips have you taken in them?

I regularly travel across the pond and to Brazil on BizE and am not at all horizontally challenged. No extension belt needed here! While BizE was great when it first introduced, it has fallen behind the market. The width of 18.5 inches makes a significant difference and after about 5 hours in that seat it does get uncomfortable. While putting a leather cover on the same frame will reduce maintenance costs and give a slight update to the appearance, it will not solve the problem that many find with the seat. CO did take the right approach with the 767.
Tailwinds!!!
 
gokmengs
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RE: Delta Testing New BusinessElite Cabin Interior

Sun Jul 24, 2005 8:28 am

I fly DL business elite very frequently, and although I can't say enough about the service of the FA's, I think improvements on the equipment will be a welcomed change. As a matter of fact just 2 days ago I flew JFK-TXL BizElite and as always service was great, but IFE especially needs improvement such as bigger screens and in demand movies. As far as the seat goes I find the width satisfying however there are many airlines with better width. In my 20+ Bizelite travels I never had the opportunity of flying the 777 but I think its pretty much the same. I believe DL Bizelite product needs an overhaul that can attract more dollars to DL already succesful international network. Also additional routes from JFK(LHR-NRT-HKG) should be added after the overhaul I just can't figure out why they don't have it now. IMO
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dutchjet
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RE: Delta Testing New BusinessElite Cabin Interior

Sun Jul 24, 2005 8:42 am

Quoting Gokmengs (Reply 13):
I fly DL business elite very frequently, and although I can't say enough about the service of the FA's, I think improvements on the equipment will be a welcomed change. As a matter of fact just 2 days ago I flew JFK-TXL BizElite and as always service was great, but IFE especially needs improvement such as bigger screens and in demand movies. As far as the seat goes I find the width satisfying however there are many airlines with better width. In my 20+ Bizelite travels I never had the opportunity of flying the 777 but I think its pretty much the same. I believe DL Bizelite product needs an overhaul that can attract more dollars to DL already succesful international network. Also additional routes from JFK(LHR-NRT-HKG) should be added after the overhaul I just can't figure out why they don't have it now. IMO

I dont think an upgrade to the IFE options is being considered as part of the Biz Elite upgrade - we are talking new seat covers, imporvements to cabin decoration and possibly an update to service items. Advanced IFE systems that incorporate AVOD cost a fortune, and I dont think DL can spend the money at this time.

As for additional routes, DL cannot fly to LHR due to Bermuda 2, DL tried JFK-NRT and failed and there is a lot of competition on that route right now with AA being the latest to enter the market, JFK-HKG is flown by CX and (from EWR) CO which is probably more than adequate to cover demand and, in any case, DL does not have aircraft available to fly that long route (they have a small fleet of 777s).....DL once tried service to Asia with service to cities such as Nagoya, Hong Kong, Tapei, Bangkok, etc from gateways in PDX and LAX.......and did not do very well. The ATL-NRT route is the only connection to Asia that DL still flies.

[Edited 2005-07-24 01:43:56]
 
ikramerica
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RE: Delta Testing New BusinessElite Cabin Interior

Sun Jul 24, 2005 9:01 am

Quoting Alitalia744 (Reply 11):
So true. I have yet to come across someone unpleasant, unfriendly, or unhelpful at Delta. Truly a world-class carrier. It continues to amaze me.

They seem to have a good attitude, but I don't think it translates into positive service all the time, at least in my experience. It comes across more as a carefree attitude, where when something goes wrong, they smile and shrug but don't really care.

And some of DLs interiors just are disgracefully dirty and worn out, and when you compare them to the vast majority of the CO fleet with new interiors, combined with the better seats throughout first and Businessfirst compared to DL, it's no contest. Since DL/CO/NW are the most comparable in terms of product classes, it's hard to claim that DL with such crappy equipment is superior when CO also offers good service, food, and no 18.5" first or BF seats. DLs BE service is often more comparable to 3-class airlines business class, while COs BF cabins match or surpass what International First class used to be like before the introduction of suite products.
Of all the things to worry about... the Wookie has no pants.
 
avek00
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RE: Delta Testing New BusinessElite Cabin Interior

Sun Jul 24, 2005 9:15 am

Quoting ConcordeBoy (Reply 1):
That said, DL was one of the pioneers of the First/Business hybrid-- yet now, the C/J offerings of many 3 and 4 class airlines have by and large left DL's product completely in a the dust. Very sad, though understandable, to see

Wait a friggin' minute...

In an era of lie-flat J beds and flat-but-not-level seats, the *best* Delta can do is a new da*ned seat cover? Hell, even Northwest scrounged up some change for a Business Class revamp - Delta appears to be penny wise and pound foolish on this one...
Live life to the fullest.
 
DeltaMIA
Posts: 1622
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RE: Delta Testing New BusinessElite Cabin Interior

Sun Jul 24, 2005 9:51 am

Quoting Avek00 (Reply 16):
In an era of lie-flat J beds and flat-but-not-level seats, the *best* Delta can do is a new da*ned seat cover?

It's a test. DL is testing to see when they introduce the new BizElite seat whether to make it leather, cloth (like CO), or a leather/cloth combo like it is now. Those of you that fly the ATL-MUC flights can let DL know whether you like all leather or not that is all. This won't be introduced systemwide.
It's a big building with patients, but that's not important right now.
 
jrlander
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RE: Delta Testing New BusinessElite Cabin Interior

Sun Jul 24, 2005 10:15 am

Quoting Dutchjet (Reply 14):
dont think an upgrade to the IFE options is being considered as part of the Biz Elite upgrade - we are talking new seat covers, imporvements to cabin decoration and possibly an update to service items. Advanced IFE systems that incorporate AVOD cost a fortune, and I dont think DL can spend the money at this time.


I have heard that they are planning an IFE upgrade. Someone here in Atlanta said they were looking at bigger screens, though I'm not sure how they can do that with the existing seats. I wonder, though I have not heard this, if someone can replace the bones of the system using the current inseat equipment, they might be able to provide a great improvement. This may not be AVOD, but they could replace the current tape players with a digital system offering more channels that would require less space and weigh less.
 
ConcordeBoy
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RE: Delta Testing New BusinessElite Cabin Interior

Sun Jul 24, 2005 11:23 am

Quoting Dutchjet (Reply 14):
The ATL-NRT route is the only connection to Asia that DL still flies.

...I can think of three other DL-metal Asian flights that might beg to differ  Wink
Faire du ciel le plus bel endroit de la terre c'est impossible sans Concorde!
 
rwsea
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RE: Delta Testing New BusinessElite Cabin Interior

Sun Jul 24, 2005 11:25 am

The thing people are missing here is that these are going to be the same seats, just different covers. They might be adding new carpet and refurbishing the interiors, but the seats will be 90% the same.

I hope they decide to wait until they can do it right rather than do a half-a** job now. Totally revamp BizE with 2-1-2 seating, near lie-flat seats, AVOD IFE with bigger screens, and improved seats with new features.
 
tbear815
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RE: Delta Testing New BusinessElite Cabin Interior

Sun Jul 24, 2005 11:41 am

Good evening all,

I said I wouldn't go there, but I must. I don't care what airline we speak of; I've flown both carriers and, as with ALL carriers, they are all reactive and not proactive. Rather than be a trend follower, they should be a trend setter. So maybe your seat isn't "your home away from home with all the conveniences." You're are traveling with an airline with such service and ambiance that you can take a mental "breather" from everyday.

For the truly long-hauls, yes have a First Class cabin with all the best your company can offer. I'd really like to see the upgrade figures and full rev vs. "some rev." But don't do what the Jones' do - create something new, comfortable, yet refined. Crew are usually only as good as the pax with whom they're flying - there has to be a rapport. If you're serving "grub," you're probably not as proud as you would normally be. That's why such service in international F is as good as it is. The Senior people work up there because it is what flying used to be. Relaxed and Civilized. Not cattle-car.

I'm not a Union man (I was, but I was blackballed...long story), but you can't ask F/A's to provide and smile when there is nothing to provide. That's why cabin layout isn't as important as product. Why can't these airlines do what they do best and stick with it? Concentrate on your key market and make it work the best way possible.

'Nuff said - Thank you AA for inventing mileage programs. In Britain, they would call them schemes. All the programs have become "schemes." What a costly mistake!

Tbear
 
Alitalia744
Posts: 3777
Joined: Thu Mar 30, 2000 8:22 am

RE: Delta Testing New BusinessElite Cabin Interior

Sun Jul 24, 2005 11:44 am

Quoting RwSEA (Reply 20):
The thing people are missing here is that these are going to be the same seats, just different covers. They might be adding new carpet and refurbishing the interiors, but the seats will be 90% the same.

and the thing other people miss is that this is only a test to see whether the NEW seats should feature leather or not.

DL has plans to completely refurbish BizE with new seats when they can afford to. It will be nice.
Some see lines, others see between the lines.
 
ConcordeBoy
Posts: 16852
Joined: Thu Feb 01, 2001 8:04 am

RE: Delta Testing New BusinessElite Cabin Interior

Sun Jul 24, 2005 12:39 pm

Quoting Tbear815 (Reply 21):
as with ALL carriers, they are all reactive and not proactive. Rather than be a trend follower, they should be a trend setter.

...not only is the aforementioned quote rather nonsensical, it's also impossible:
someone has to initiate a trend bub.
Faire du ciel le plus bel endroit de la terre c'est impossible sans Concorde!
 
LawnDart
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RE: Delta Testing New BusinessElite Cabin Interior

Sun Jul 24, 2005 1:37 pm

Quoting Skibum9 (Reply 12):
Excuse me LawnDart....BUT THAT IS A TOTAL B.S. STATEMENT. I have to ask, how many long-haul trips have you taken in them?

Good Lord, calm down... scared 

I have flown BusinessElite about...hmm...14 times in the past 4 years, twice in the 777 from CDG, the rest in the 76ER to CDG, LGW, NCE and ZRH. At 5'11" and 185 lbs., I find the 767 version of the BizElite seat perfectly comfortable.

I have also flown CO's BusinessFirst (all 767s), and I guess I didn't truly appreciate the expansive accommodations (hardly noticed), although to be honest with you, I'm not real fond of the barbershop chair in the middle.

To your point, I did hear one customer complain about the width of the DL BizElite seat on the 767, but he was very large (both tall and wide).

Having answered your question, let me ask you one, Skibum9: if Delta configured their 767 with 5 across in BusinessElite, that would be a reduction in capacity of about -17%. Assuming a like reduction in potential revenue through capacity loss alone, Delta would need to increase BusinessElite fares about the same amount, or 17%, to maintain revenue generation by that product.

Let's make another assumption...on August 16 (a Tues), the one-way BizElite fare from JFK to CDG (one of the shortest trans-Atlantic routes) is $3,414. A 17% increase in fare would be an additional $580. That works out to about $200 for each inch of increased seat width. Is that worth it to you?

By the way, the BusinessFirst fare on CO from EWR to CDG on the same date is $3,944...$530 more expensive than Delta.
 
tbear815
Posts: 689
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RE: Delta Testing New BusinessElite Cabin Interior

Sun Jul 24, 2005 2:18 pm

My dear Concorde boy,

Initiating a trend should be up to the great MBA's and bean counters who have trashed the airlines into mockeries of what they were. Obviously, they had a lapse in their education. I went to Ivy League Schools - I have a Masters in Hotel Administration. I was always taught that being pro-active in a guest relations atmosphere is far better than complaints for lagging behind.

As for initiating the trend, it takes an airline with the balls of Jet Blue. Yes, they are a LCC, but what they do, they do well. These recent "great" managers don't think that way. If AA has a nonstop to NRT from DFW, then DL sure as shit has to as well. Look at most hubs and feeders. As any concentric circle starts from the single pebble in the still waters, everyone follows. The damn airlines should be that pebble. All it takes is imagination and entertainment, both taking various forms.

I find the same stuff in Hotel Management. Stifled imaginations. Sheep following the Shepherd who may not even know his way. I guess this is the future of the hospitality industry. I was trained in the Old World style; I have helped many companies bring this idea up to date, but things just ain't the same. We used to call it "cookie cutter design."

Oh, and Concorde boy, re-read my original post.

Tbear
 
baw716
Posts: 1459
Joined: Thu Nov 20, 2003 7:02 pm

RE: Delta Testing New BusinessElite Cabin Interior

Sun Jul 24, 2005 2:43 pm

I agree that the BizElite seating is only a tad wider than the coach seat. With that said, I have flown Delta between SFO-JFK on one day turnarounds and have been treated so well by them on those flights, especially the JFK-SFO returns, I will never complain about the service.

I have also flown them across the Atlantic several times on the 763 and I have found the service to be reasonably good. However, I have flown Alitalia in Magnifica Class and I have found the service far better and the cabin arrangement far more comfortable, even though the seat pitch is about 5 inches less than Delta. The design of the Capri seat is phenominal for sleeping, even though it does not recline to a full 180 degree position for sleep. See attached picture:
http://images.airliners.net/open.fil...%20OL%20cubgb_vq%20QRFP&photo_nr=1

As you can see in the picture, this is a new aircraft just delivered to AZ, and the seats have just been installed. This is what a J class cabin should look like and Delta would be well served to match its other SkyTeam partners by having such a high quality product on its international flights.

baw716
David L. Lamb, fmr Area Mgr Alitalia SFO 1998-2002, fmr Regional Analyst SFO-UAL 1992-1998
 
SFOerik
Posts: 103
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RE: Delta Testing New BusinessElite Cabin Interior

Sun Jul 24, 2005 2:47 pm

DL biz elita on the 777 and MD-11 were far more comfy than the 767. They should have opted for a 2-1-2 config. for the 767. It is just too narrow. I flew it ATL - SCL and it was a bit tight (18.5" width). They need to standardize the 76 wth the 777.

Last year i flew the 777 JFK-CDG and it was dreamy!!!!!!!!

els
I will no longer stress about upgrades!
 
ConcordeBoy
Posts: 16852
Joined: Thu Feb 01, 2001 8:04 am

RE: Delta Testing New BusinessElite Cabin Interior

Sun Jul 24, 2005 3:41 pm

Quoting Tbear815 (Reply 25):
Oh, and Concorde boy, re-read my original post.

...I did, it was even more worthless the 2nd time around  Yeah sure

Quoting SFOerik (Reply 27):
They should have opted for a 2-1-2 config. for the 767. It is just too narrow.

DL had the opportunity to do this when they recently lowered the 763ERs' premium capacity... they chose to instead eliminate rows via the "mini-cabin". Doubtful they'll carry it any further.
Faire du ciel le plus bel endroit de la terre c'est impossible sans Concorde!
 
panamair
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RE: Delta Testing New BusinessElite Cabin Interior

Sun Jul 24, 2005 4:11 pm

Quoting SFOerik (Reply 27):
Last year i flew the 777 JFK-CDG and it was dreamy!!!!!!!!

DL hasn't had the 777 on JFK-CDG since early 2003.

I fly DL BizElite across the pond once every two-three weeks on the 763ERs and think the seat is one of the most comfortable out there, especially when fully reclined even though the product is about 6-7 years old. All this "lie-flat" hoopla is precisely that - except for BA and VS who do it right and have real "lie-flats" - all the others are really "lie-flat-at-an-angle" which I find horribly distracting because the whole night I feel like I'm sliding down the seat (have tried LX, AF,LH, and SQ). And BTW, most airlines flying 767s across the pond use a 2-2-2 configuration in Business:
2-1-2: CO, AZ, AC
2-2-2: DL, AA, UA, US, BA, KL, OS

With regard to IFE, the word I heard a month or two ago was that AVOD IFE was going to be part of the BizElite product revamp (maybe that has been or will be delayed in an effort to reign in costs temporarily)

As for service, sure, DL has bad apples too but they come in significantly fewer numbers than most other U.S. legacy carriers. Especially in the premium cabin, 98% of the FAs I have encountered transatlantic have been professional, courteous, and friendly; even though the company doesn't give them much to work with, they try harder than their counterparts at AA and UA.
 
Jamake1
Posts: 800
Joined: Mon May 17, 2004 2:30 pm

RE: Delta Testing New BusinessElite Cabin Interior

Sun Jul 24, 2005 4:17 pm

I would say that BA and Virgin Atlantic have done a remarkable job of innovating and trend-setting when it comes to a premium class product. BA was the first to introduce the suites in First Class and the first to introduce lie-flat beds in Business (Club World).

For the most part, all of the U.S. carriers have lagged behind and have merely been playing catch-up to BA and Virgin's respective products. Just when the U.S. carriers appear to have caught up to the competition, BA continues to make investments that differentiate its premium class product further, hence, the lie-flat bed in Business.

Continental is to be congratulated for consistently offering the best Business Class product of the U.S. carriers. BA has had the right idea all along; to chase the segment of the market that will pay a premium for a better service. For the size and scope of BA, I am amazed at how time and again, the airline has been able to consistently deliver on its promise.

On the domestic front, I have been encouraged by some of United's initiatives such as Economy Plus as well as First Class and Economy Plus cabins in the RJ fleet. It has created product consistency for them and has helped make RJ flying more palatable to those customers who have been accustomed to traveling on mainline aircraft. And other than a few complaints that the United Business seats are more comfortable than the United First lie-flat beds, I think United's p.s. product is a huge step in the right direction. Of all the legacies, United at least, appears to be differentiating its product from the rest of the pack. My hope is that they can return to profitability doing so...
United's B747-400. "She's a a cruel lover."
 
BestWestern
Posts: 7000
Joined: Fri Sep 08, 2000 8:46 pm

RE: Delta Testing New BusinessElite Cabin Interior

Sun Jul 24, 2005 4:41 pm

I made Delta Platinum Medallion simply from flying Trans-atlantic with them. DL should leave the seating alone, and focus on quality of service. DL Bizelite is a poor excuse for a business class service.

DL cabin crew can be excellent, or apalling, and so can the food, and wines. It seems that service these days is more apalling than good. Staff training for DL crew on Biz Elite is really really poor. They dont know the product, wines, differences between pasta and risotto, nor do they care. The amount of times I've had to remind the DL crew to hand out the fastpass and arrivals lounge passes for Gatwick has gone beyond a joke.

For those reasons I no longer fly Delta whenever possible, and now use BA or NW to ATL. Its amazing how DL have cut the quality of their business service when others have invested in superior quality products. DL's latest enhancement is to call passengers by name..... Jeez, all other carriers have done that for decades.

The new NW business class product is superb, and alongside their always excellent cabin crew and lack of queues at DTW INS ive found a new way to travel to the US.

Delta playing with toilet enhancements wont cut the mustard, i'm sorry to say.
You are 100 times more likely to catch a cold on a flight than an average person!
 
skibum9
Posts: 862
Joined: Sun Nov 04, 2001 1:13 pm

RE: Delta Testing New BusinessElite Cabin Interior

Sun Jul 24, 2005 11:36 pm

Quoting LawnDart (Reply 24):
f Delta configured their 767 with 5 across in BusinessElite, that would be a reduction in capacity of about -17%. Assuming a like reduction in potential revenue through capacity loss alone, Delta would need to increase BusinessElite fares about the same amount, or 17%, to maintain revenue generation by that product.

LawnDart, you are not thinking in two dimensions here...BizE and coach. Hypothetically, if DL reconfigures to a 2-1-2 set-up in BizE, they do not necessarily remove seats from BizE, but may decide to remove seats from coach and put BizE seats in there place. This could be done in the mini cabin that was previously BizE and is now coach and crew seats.

Using your methodology, just looking at the fares from CVG-LGW, a BizE ticket is $7,998.06 roundtrip leaving July 31 and returning Aug 7. And as you said the competition is closely matched in price so they can't increase the ticket price here. I agree DL will not want to lose the nearly $50k in revenue these 6 BizE seats would generate and as such it is easier to remove the coach seats which they make far less revenue, which is $1,095.02 on the same trip. Say they remove all the coach seats in the mini cabin, that would be 15 seats (worst case - more likely they could remove only 12). That would be a little more than $15k in lost revenue, which they could spread over the ticket price throughout coach, which would be less than $100 per ticket.

Now taking it a step further. On ticket price alone, a BizE customer is worth 8 coach customers. DL should be bending over backwards for these customers as the opportunity cost for losing just one to a competitor due to a superior product is significant. So yes - DL needs to do what they can to have at least a competitive BizE product in terms of both comfort and service.
Tailwinds!!!
 
1MillionFlyer
Posts: 1937
Joined: Wed Sep 08, 2004 8:55 am

RE: Delta Testing New BusinessElite Cabin Interior

Sun Jul 24, 2005 11:37 pm

Quoting ConcordeBoy (Reply 19):
...I can think of three other DL-metal Asian flights that might beg to differ

what are they?
Golf Foxtrot you are cleared for departure
 
NYCAAer
Posts: 595
Joined: Thu Jul 29, 2004 10:22 pm

RE: Delta Testing New BusinessElite Cabin Interior

Mon Jul 25, 2005 1:11 am

Quoting 1MillionFlyer (Reply 33):
what are they?

CDG-BOM
FRA-BOM (seasonal)
CDG-Chennai
 
LawnDart
Posts: 861
Joined: Fri May 20, 2005 11:33 pm

RE: Delta Testing New BusinessElite Cabin Interior

Mon Jul 25, 2005 1:28 am

Quoting Skibum9 (Reply 32):
LawnDart, you are not thinking in two dimensions here...BizE and coach. Hypothetically, if DL reconfigures to a 2-1-2 set-up in BizE, they do not necessarily remove seats from BizE, but may decide to remove seats from coach and put BizE seats in there place. This could be done in the mini cabin that was previously BizE and is now coach and crew seats.

They just removed the BizElite seats from that mini cabin, probably for a reason (they didn't sell the entire allotment more times than not; keep in mind that a lot of Business Class traffic is upgrade, and therefore not revenue generating in the strict sense). If they then removed the coach seats to put in 5-across BizElite, they could maintain the current capacity for the J product (or a little more), and furthermore, this forum would light up with "What is DL thinking" threads...

My analysis was based on maintaining the current cabin dimensions, which would result in a -17% capacity by going from 6 to 5 across. Delta (at this point) apparently doesn't think it's worth it, and neither do a bunch of other carriers, both US and foreign flag.

Quoting Baw716 (Reply 26):
However, I have flown Alitalia in Magnifica Class and I have found the service far better and the cabin arrangement far more comfortable, even though the seat pitch is about 5 inches less than Delta

Enjoy it while it lasts! Although, I have to admit the cabin is attractive in a bland, monochromatic sort of way.

Quoting BestWestern (Reply 31):
DL's latest enhancement is to call passengers by name..... Jeez, all other carriers have done that for decades.

Actually, so has Delta.
 
OttoPylit
Topic Author
Posts: 2259
Joined: Wed Dec 17, 2003 10:58 am

RE: Delta Testing New BusinessElite Cabin Interior

Mon Jul 25, 2005 1:34 am

Quoting BestWestern (Reply 31):
They dont know the product, wines, differences between pasta and risotto, nor do they care.

They are not waitresses, they are friggin flight attendants. Its not their job to know the difference in wines, nor the difference between pasta and risotto. Their job is to make sure your ass gets off the plane in an emergency, and then secondly to provide a comfortable atmosphere for you. Not to be able to explain the differences between wines and pasta. Hell, I don't know the difference between wines(Pinot Grigio, Pino Noir, they all just about taste the same to me), and the only pasta I know is spaghetti, lasagna, and manicotti. And risotto? Sorry if I've lived that much of my life in a shell. lol

Quoting BestWestern (Reply 31):
DL's latest enhancement is to call passengers by name..... Jeez, all other carriers have done that for decades.

They have always called me by name, and I'm a nonrev. Always coming by during the night asking, "Mr. ?, can I get you anything? Another blanket, perhaps another pillow? Ok, let me know if there is anything I can do." I would like to say, "Hey, I'm low maintenance. Unless you got a cute blond 18 yr old girl with a nice figure that you can squeeze in this seat with me, then I'm good."

Quoting BestWestern (Reply 31):
Delta playing with toilet enhancements wont cut the mustard, i'm sorry to say.

No, but it will make it easier to cut the cheese, don't you think? lol


Otto
I don't have a microwave, but I do have a clock that occasionally cooks shit.
 
B4REAL
Posts: 2557
Joined: Sun Aug 10, 2003 5:53 am

RE: Delta Testing New BusinessElite Cabin Interior

Mon Jul 25, 2005 1:41 am

Quoting LawnDart (Reply 24):
Having answered your question, let me ask you one, Skibum9: if Delta configured their 767 with 5 across in BusinessElite, that would be a reduction in capacity of about -17%. Assuming a like reduction in potential revenue through capacity loss alone, Delta would need to increase BusinessElite fares about the same amount, or 17%, to maintain revenue generation by that product.

These number do not matter, it works for CO (who just posted a profit), and BusinessFirst is a better product from equipment standpoint.

Quoting SFOerik (Reply 27):
DL biz elita on the 777 and MD-11 were far more comfy than the 767. They should have opted for a 2-1-2 config. for the 767. It is just too narrow. I flew it ATL - SCL and it was a bit tight (18.5" width). They need to standardize the 76 wth the 777.

Exactly the problem. The same product, BusinessElite, on two different aircraft with substantially different takeaways.

Quoting BestWestern (Reply 31):
. DL's latest enhancement is to call passengers by name..... Jeez, all other carriers have done that for decades.

As LawnDart says, they've been doing this for a long time depending on the route.
B4REAL, spelled like it sounds
 
skibum9
Posts: 862
Joined: Sun Nov 04, 2001 1:13 pm

RE: Delta Testing New BusinessElite Cabin Interior

Mon Jul 25, 2005 1:51 am

Quoting LawnDart (Reply 35):
They just removed the BizElite seats from that mini cabin, probably for a reason (they didn't sell the entire allotment more times than not; keep in mind that a lot of Business Class traffic is upgrade, and therefore not revenue generating in the strict sense).

From what I have been told, DL removed the BizE seats becuase yes they were not selling and because of the number of upgrades they were granting. Since they went down to 36 BizE seats, upgrades are much more difficult to get during the high season. I fly across the pond at least once a month on DL. My company's travel policy is that any flight over 5 hours we get First of Business Class. As an incentive they offer us $1000 to book coach. So what we will do is book coach, take the incentive and upgrade with miles. However it has been next to impossible to upgrade since they downsized BizE. So now we just book BizE.

If you recall, DL sent a survey out last year to test the concept of a 3 class cabin: Normal J, a psuedo B class mostly for upgrades and an upgraded Biz class. So at least DL recognizes the importance of keeping the BizE customer's happy and points to the fact that they recognize some sort of split between full fare BizE and upgrades, which I contend are not as plentiful as you would think.
Tailwinds!!!
 
ikramerica
Posts: 13730
Joined: Mon May 23, 2005 9:33 am

RE: Delta Testing New BusinessElite Cabin Interior

Mon Jul 25, 2005 1:54 am

Sorry but the typical international business class customer sure as heckfire knows what risotto is. Just because you don't, doesn't mean the F/A shouldn't know that it is rice and not pasta! I mean, if the most senior F/As are international premium F/As, one would assume they are getting paid all that extra money because they do a great job, and doing a great job always means knowing your product inside and out, period.
Of all the things to worry about... the Wookie has no pants.
 
FlyPNS1
Posts: 5260
Joined: Wed Dec 01, 1999 7:12 am

RE: Delta Testing New BusinessElite Cabin Interior

Mon Jul 25, 2005 2:03 am

I really hope DL does a complete overhaul of BizE and not just a minor touch-up. If all they're going to do is cosmetic work, it's probably not worth it. BizE has fallen too far behind for just cosmetic work.
 
dutchjet
Posts: 7714
Joined: Sat Oct 14, 2000 6:13 am

RE: Delta Testing New BusinessElite Cabin Interior

Mon Jul 25, 2005 2:14 am

Quoting OttoPylit (Reply 36):

They are not waitresses, they are friggin flight attendants. Its not their job to know the difference in wines, nor the difference between pasta and risotto. Their job is to make sure your ass gets off the plane in an emergency, and then secondly to provide a comfortable atmosphere for you. Not to be able to explain the differences between wines and pasta. Hell, I don't know the difference between wines(Pinot Grigio, Pino Noir, they all just about taste the same to me), and the only pasta I know is spaghetti, lasagna, and manicotti. And risotto? Sorry if I've lived that much of my life in a shell. lol

I absolutely agree with you - F/As are not waiters or wine stewards, and an F/As primarily responsibility is safety, no discussion........

BUT,

I suggest that you take a ride in Biz Class with one of the leading European or Asian airlines, or QF or NZ, or even CO, the F/A, aside from being the most important safety system on the airplane, do know about the food being offered and the wines being served, and can answer your questions about the meal service. Please remember that atleast some of the pax sitting in DL's front cabin are paying in excess of $7000 roundtrip for the priviledge of sitting there and they should be able to find out which Pinot Noir or Chadonnay is featured on the flight. Why? If for no other reason, the F/As and Pursers in the premium cabins of other airlines (think DL's competitors) can offer that service. At these prices (even if some pax have used miles to upgrade), service is very important, its a different issue from whether a coach pax who paid $49 to fly from ATL to LAX should be offered a glass or a full can of Coke.

Dont get me wrong, I like DL and think that their cabin crews, in general, provide a warm and friendly atmosphere on board.....with everything that has gone on at DL, there is still a trace of that old-fashioned southern hospitality that DL was once famous for, however, the Biz Elite product has fallen behind the times in many ways in recent years (mostly because the competition has gotten so much better) and it is now nothing more than mediocre at best. If DL ever wants to show a profit again, they are going to have to work a bit harder and have a better product in J class - filled J class cabins on long haul flights adds lots revenue to the bottom line of an airline's financial statement. This is an important issue over at DL.
 
tommy767
Posts: 4658
Joined: Sat Aug 09, 2003 12:18 pm

RE: Delta Testing New BusinessElite Cabin Interior

Mon Jul 25, 2005 2:23 am

A bit off topic, yet still relating to DL:

It's a good idea for them to improve upon their BIZClass product. However, when I flew with them in April from MCO-ATL on a 763, the coach seats were downright awful. They were worn, dirty, and even smelly (considering we were in the last row right next to the bathrooms.) As a plus for Delta, they replaced seat covers and overhead bins (possibly even panneling?) on their MD-88s which made the ride much smoother and more comfortable. The MD-88s seemed to be much newer in appearence, a fresh change for DL. IMHO, Delta should start replacing their coach seat covers on the 767s (ESPECIALLY INT'L) and 757s, which are terribly worn and outdated.

Tommy in EWR/LAX.
"KEEP CLIMBING" -- DELTA
 
gigneil
Posts: 14133
Joined: Fri Nov 08, 2002 10:25 am

RE: Delta Testing New BusinessElite Cabin Interior

Mon Jul 25, 2005 2:51 am

Quoting Burnsie28 (Reply 5):
now if NW would just get some new interiors and seats.......

You of all people should know that NW has pioneered an all new WBC and Economy class on the A330, that the 744 is being/has been refitted with the new WBC, and that the D9S and DC10s received an economy class overhaul not all that long ago.

Quoting Ikramerica (Reply 15):
The ATL-NRT route is the only connection to Asia that DL still flies.

Hardly true.

N
 
Dalmd88
Posts: 2391
Joined: Fri Jul 28, 2000 3:19 am

RE: Delta Testing New BusinessElite Cabin Interior

Mon Jul 25, 2005 3:19 am

I agree that the FA should know the entire product. It doesn't take much to know the different wines that we are currently poring. My mom used to fly alot of UA first class to Asia and she always remaked how knowlegable the crew was about their full product.

I also agree the coach seats are in terrible shape on the interational fleet. The 757 fleet is currently going through the same mod as the MD88 fleet and the 767 will follow.

The biggest problem I see though is the time issue we have in Mtx. They never give us enough time to work on the cabin issues on a daily basis. During the typical nightly layover check in ATL we only have enough time to do essential maintenance. Last night the plane I was working on had some other time consuming work that needed to be done, so a couple of us were able to devote nearly an entire shift to repairing cabin items. It was all little things like tightening armrests and adjusting seat reclines. Each seat only takes a few minutes, but when every other seat has some issue it takes time. If we had a couple of extra guys we would have changed carpets also. We do have a dedicated crew to work cabin items on the line, but they just can't see enough of the fleet.
 
Alitalia744
Posts: 3777
Joined: Thu Mar 30, 2000 8:22 am

RE: Delta Testing New BusinessElite Cabin Interior

Mon Jul 25, 2005 3:40 am

FYI Delta isn't the only airline cutting down on F/J seating, AF's reconfigs have less premium seating as do AZ's...which you'll see in the coming months.
Some see lines, others see between the lines.
 
burnsie28
Posts: 5027
Joined: Mon Aug 02, 2004 1:49 am

RE: Delta Testing New BusinessElite Cabin Interior

Mon Jul 25, 2005 3:42 am

Quoting Gigneil (Reply 43):

You of all people should know that NW has pioneered an all new WBC and Economy class on the A330, that the 744 is being/has been refitted with the new WBC, and that the D9S and DC10s received an economy class overhaul not all that long ago.

I was talking more of new seats, IFE etc on things like the A319/320, 757, and maybe even radio on the DC-9 (which they have thought of doing), I heard a rumor a while back a NW DC-9 (just one of them) had the new seats that were found on the 330, but I was never able to confirm it. Though, I would like to see that pattern and such on the domestic fleet.
 
Zone1
Posts: 894
Joined: Sun Jan 09, 2005 4:47 am

RE: Delta Testing New BusinessElite Cabin Interior

Mon Jul 25, 2005 3:43 am

Quoting DeltaMIA (Reply 17):

It's a test. DL is testing to see when they introduce the new BizElite seat whether to make it leather, cloth (like CO), or a leather/cloth combo like it is now. Those of you that fly the ATL-MUC flights can let DL know whether you like all leather or not that is all. This won't be introduced systemwide.

When will Delta go with an entirely new BizElite seat? With AA introducing the lie-flat business seat in 2006, DL will definately need some type of upgrade. I thought Grinstein's plan was to have a superior product, so they can charge a premium. This probably can't work in coach, but in first or business, his reasoning is sound. I hope Grinstein sticks to his guns, and they pull out the stops on a new premium cabin!
/// U N I T E D
 
Jamake1
Posts: 800
Joined: Mon May 17, 2004 2:30 pm

RE: Delta Testing New BusinessElite Cabin Interior

Mon Jul 25, 2005 5:00 am

Quoting B4real (Reply 37):
They are not waitresses, they are friggin flight attendants. Its not their job to know the difference in wines, nor the difference between pasta and risotto. Their job is to make sure your ass gets off the plane in an emergency, and then secondly to provide a comfortable atmosphere for you. Not to be able to explain the differences between wines and pasta. Hell, I don't know the difference between wines(Pinot Grigio, Pino Noir, they all just about taste the same to me), and the only pasta I know is spaghetti, lasagna, and manicotti. And risotto?

Spoken like a true working-class blue collar employee who lacks the insight
to understand what it takes to deliver service excellence to the high yield, yet discerning global traveller...and regrettfully, reflective of the typical American mentality that settles for mediocrity. It's that kind of thinking that plagues most U.S. airlines and why they are not in the same league as the world's best airlines such as Singapore, British, Cathay Pacific, Emerites, etc...
United's B747-400. "She's a a cruel lover."
 
panamair
Posts: 3759
Joined: Fri Oct 12, 2001 2:24 am

RE: Delta Testing New BusinessElite Cabin Interior

Mon Jul 25, 2005 5:21 am

Quoting BestWestern (Reply 31):
DL's latest enhancement is to call passengers by name..... Jeez, all other carriers have done that for decades.

Puh-leeze, don't exaggerate! BA, AF, and LH have never bothered to address me by name, AA has tried twice in the last six years (and then only once or twice during the flight when they actually had the manifest in front of them), UA has tried maybe 40% of the time, LX (only by the maitre d' when he/she made his/her rounds). The only one that has consistently done so has been SQ; DL is actually better at this than all the other U.S. carriers and even some international carriers...has even had it happen to me on DL in Domestic First quite a few times....

Quoting BestWestern (Reply 31):
They dont know the product, wines, differences between pasta and risotto, nor do they care. The amount of times I've had to remind the DL crew to hand out the fastpass and arrivals lounge passes for Gatwick has gone beyond a joke.

That may be true of DL FAs out of ATL but my experience out of JFK has been much better - especially when the ex-Pan Am crew are on board - these ladies know their wines and service. BTW, the regular 20 year old Singapore Girl can't even pronounce some of these wines, let alone tell you the difference between a Merlot or a Cabernet or a Pinotage...most of the time when you ask them what the selection is, they just show you the bottles..don't even try asking them which would be better....

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