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1337Delta764
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Boeing 747 Upper Deck - First Or Business?

Thu Dec 15, 2005 4:00 am

I noticed that most airlines today have business class on the upper deck on their 747s. Some, though, like LH, have first class on the upper deck. Is there any reasoning whether the upper deck should be first class or business class?
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deltagator
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RE: Boeing 747 Upper Deck - First Or Business?

Thu Dec 15, 2005 4:06 am

Perhaps the "appearance" of being in an exclusive private cabin up top? Personally I prefer to be on the first level. When you're flying up front you don't have to fight with coach nearly as much to get out the loading door or drag your carry-on down the stairs.
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1337Delta764
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RE: Boeing 747 Upper Deck - First Or Business?

Thu Dec 15, 2005 4:14 am

Quoting DeltaGator (Reply 1):
Perhaps the "appearance" of being in an exclusive private cabin up top? Personally I prefer to be on the first level. When you're flying up front you don't have to fight with coach nearly as much to get out the loading door or drag your carry-on down the stairs.

On the 747 replacement IMO, Boeing should add an elevator for the handicapped for the upper level.
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ikramerica
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RE: Boeing 747 Upper Deck - First Or Business?

Thu Dec 15, 2005 4:17 am

some airlines have Y+ upstairs, some have Y. Some have a mix of F/J, J/Y+. It's just an airline by airline thing.
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An-225
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RE: Boeing 747 Upper Deck - First Or Business?

Thu Dec 15, 2005 4:20 am

UA has business, LH has first. Not sure about other airlines.

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FlySSC
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RE: Boeing 747 Upper Deck - First Or Business?

Thu Dec 15, 2005 4:22 am

Air France had First Class at the upper of its B747-100/200 (6 seats on the -100, 8 on the -200) ... or Economy class on another version (27 Y seats).

Upper deck of the -300 : 57 S seats (Premium Economy)
Upper deck of the -400 : 30 J seats, now reconfigured with 57 Y seats.
 
treeny
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RE: Boeing 747 Upper Deck - First Or Business?

Thu Dec 15, 2005 4:22 am

I think a lot of this depends on the image the airline wishes to give versus 'bums in seats'

Lufthansa make no secret of their standards of Business and First class services hence PROBABLY their reasoning for having their First Class up top.

I think its more a case that in general there will be more seats filled in Business than first so it makes sense to have a seat config whereby there are more business than first seats. If you look at the BA 747-400 config for example, they dedicate their nose to First and then they have the 'main' business cabin along with seats upstairs - I may be wrong but I think it is more commercial than anything else......

Maybe I am wrong?
 
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Stitch
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RE: Boeing 747 Upper Deck - First Or Business?

Thu Dec 15, 2005 4:24 am

Could be weight of the product, as well as the design.

UA, SQ, NH, BA, CX, JL, etc. all have large suites which are probably pretty heavy. LH uses paired seats, which are probably much lighter.

Also, suites upstairs would be 1+1, which impacts capacity. Seats are 2+2, so you get twice as many in the same floorspace.

Hence the folks running suites put em up front.
 
swissgabe
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RE: Boeing 747 Upper Deck - First Or Business?

Thu Dec 15, 2005 4:27 am

Japan Airlines, South African Airways and earlier Swissair have/had Economy class in some of their 747 fleet with SUD.
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Ken777
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RE: Boeing 747 Upper Deck - First Or Business?

Thu Dec 15, 2005 4:51 am

On the 747s I have flown (BA, QF & CX) First has been in the nose, which is a great place for them. Roomy & easy to get to.

Upper deck has been Business and is my preferred choice. It seems to be more private and the storage bins next to the window seat is a major plus for me. It also provides for 2+2 seating and that would be an uncomfortable fit for First seating.
 
Tod
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RE: Boeing 747 Upper Deck - First Or Business?

Thu Dec 15, 2005 5:21 am

Quoting Stitch (Reply 7):
Could be weight of the product, as well as the design.

Usually not a problem. Seating may be heavier, but pitch is usually increased, resulting in little or no net impact.

Quoting Treeny (Reply 6):
it is more commercial than anything else......

Pretty much. The thinking is that the highest paying customers have the most convienent access, close to the door and no stairs to climb.

Tod
 
sllevin
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RE: Boeing 747 Upper Deck - First Or Business?

Thu Dec 15, 2005 6:17 am

As cool as it seems to be on the upper deck, I'd rather be in the nose. The nose is a lot quieter, and there's good sized overhead storage for rollaboards. Upper deck, while you have that neat little storage space between the seat and the window, if you have a 20" roller, there's no place to put it.

Steve
 
TonyBurr
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RE: Boeing 747 Upper Deck - First Or Business?

Thu Dec 15, 2005 6:20 am

I prefer FIRST in the nose, like SQ, BA and UA. It is just "bigger" feeling. Plus the overhears are smaller on the upper deck.
 
Tod
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RE: Boeing 747 Upper Deck - First Or Business?

Thu Dec 15, 2005 8:01 am

Quoting TonyBurr (Reply 12):
Plus the overhears are smaller on the upper deck.

The Boeing ones are really small, but the Heath Tecna and Jamco aftermarket ones are much nicer.

Tod
 
airfoilsguy
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RE: Boeing 747 Upper Deck - First Or Business?

Thu Dec 15, 2005 8:09 am

Quoting Sllevin (Reply 11):
The nose is a lot quiete

I have noticed this as well. Why is the upper deck more noisy?
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debonair
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RE: Boeing 747 Upper Deck - First Or Business?

Thu Dec 15, 2005 8:43 am

Quoting Airfoilsguy (Reply 14):
have noticed this as well. Why is the upper deck more noisy?

Yeap, but it should be better on the -400! I have worked many many years ago with LH Maintanance, and we re-configuered the First-Class from Upper-deck to main-deck- because the "SENATOR"-Passengers complained about the noise those days on the B747-200.
 
Gr8Circle
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RE: Boeing 747 Upper Deck - First Or Business?

Thu Dec 15, 2005 8:46 am

The windows on the upper deck of a 747 are terrible...too slanted...and the bins along the sides just make spotting more inconvenient....well, just my way of looking at it...
 
vv701
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RE: Boeing 747 Upper Deck - First Or Business?

Thu Dec 15, 2005 10:27 am

My guess is that where F or C are located would depend mainly on how the upper cabin size jibes with the number of seats the airline has determined that it needs in each class. It would be ridiculous to have fewer seats of a given class in the upper cabin than there was space to install there. It would be inefficient to use the upper cabin for 90 per cent of the seats of a given class and then have to create a small cabin elsewhere for the other 10 per cent.
 
roseflyer
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RE: Boeing 747 Upper Deck - First Or Business?

Thu Dec 15, 2005 10:46 am

I honestly prefer first class to be in the nose. The 2X2 first class seats on Lufthansa aren't great if you are travelling alone. I actually prefer to avoid them since if I am travelling first class since I don't want to sit next to someone. I prefer privacy. I think the A340s are much more comfortable with the 1X2X1 seating since you can sit alone if you are not travelling with anyone.

Business class is very nice on the upper deck. UA and NW both have business class up there. Virgin puts their upper class suites (along with premium economy) up there, so a suite style seat can fit.
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pixuk
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RE: Boeing 747 Upper Deck - First Or Business?

Thu Dec 15, 2005 9:04 pm

Virgin have two different configs. On their LHR aircraft, the top deck is half J (Upper Class Suites) in 1 + 1, and half W (Premium Economy) in 2 + 2.

On their LGW 747s, there is less demand for Upper Class, so those are only in Zone A on the main deck, whilst the entire top deck is W in 2 + 2.

Pete
 
Matt72033
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RE: Boeing 747 Upper Deck - First Or Business?

Thu Dec 15, 2005 9:17 pm

Quoting Pixuk (Reply 19):
On their LHR aircraft, the top deck is half J

which i believe is used as a sleeper cabin on night flights!
 
redneckslim
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RE: Boeing 747 Upper Deck - First Or Business?

Fri Dec 16, 2005 12:14 am

I just came back from a trans Asia in world business class on NWA in seat 73-A upper deck... Windows SO low you have to slide way down in your seat to see, steeps really painful on the knees and get impacted on the way out. Exit rows upper deck are no big deal, ilse seat has a f/a facing you on t/o and landing and window seat has no window...bfd! Other than useless windows 73-a is the best seat. Down below 10-a or 10-k are great, much better line of sight for viewing, and a feeling of spaciousness with an open cabin. upperdeck is over rated and for first timers. the new seats are ok but I liked the old blue cloth first class seats that were sold as business class when first was dropped from NWA.
 
zrs70
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RE: Boeing 747 Upper Deck - First Or Business?

Fri Dec 16, 2005 12:28 am

The prob with LH's first class upstairs is that it is difficult to access (for elderly, infirm, wheelchair, etc.). Usually, the airline has Biz both upstairs and downstairs, so it is a non-issue. But for those who wish to fly LH in F on a 747, but don't want to/ can't climb the stairs, then they can't fly in F at all.
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fbgdavidson
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RE: Boeing 747 Upper Deck - First Or Business?

Fri Dec 16, 2005 2:36 am

Quoting DeltaGator (Reply 1):
drag your carry-on down the stairs

There is a reason why it is called carry-on  Wink

Quoting Treeny (Reply 6):
If you look at the BA 747-400 config for example, they dedicate their nose to First and then they have the 'main' business cabin along with seats upstairs - I may be wrong but I think it is more commercial than anything else......

This works best, partly because if BA put Club World in the nose they wouldn't get any more than the current 14 F seats in.

Nose works best for F in the 747 if you have a suite/demi-cabin type product like BA, SQ, CX, QF. However I really like the 747 upstairs, I've flown it many times with BA in Club World and like the exclusive feel (probably a little perceived there Big grin) but most recently I've stuck to flying LHR-IAD-LHR where the 777 and 747 operate together. The 747 is far superior in it's own right as check-in seem to fill the main deck first, (I've flown with four other passengers upstairs before and with 2 FAs the service is superb!), more personal space if you get a window seat, two bathrooms. Pretty much everything about upstairs is better than the 777 or downstairs.


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Tod
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RE: Boeing 747 Upper Deck - First Or Business?

Fri Dec 16, 2005 4:00 am

Quoting Fbgdavidson (Reply 23):
I've flown with four other passengers upstairs before and with 2 FAs the service is superb!), more personal space if you get a window seat, two bathrooms. Pretty much everything about upstairs is better than the 777 or downstairs.

All good, except the bins.

[shameless plug mode] At least the Heath Tecna bins in the photo are much nicer than the OEM product [/shameless plug mode]
 
GQfluffy
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RE: Boeing 747 Upper Deck - First Or Business?

Fri Dec 16, 2005 4:10 am

Quoting 1337Delta764 (Reply 2):
On the 747 replacement IMO, Boeing should add an elevator for the handicapped for the upper level.

Excess weight. No need for it. Why do you think this?
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1337Delta764
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RE: Boeing 747 Upper Deck - First Or Business?

Fri Dec 16, 2005 5:06 am

Quoting GQfluffy (Reply 25):
Excess weight. No need for it. Why do you think this?

With the likely use of composites, the airframe would be lighter than a 747-8, therefore allowing its use. BTW IMO the 747 replacement should have two full decks and a third partial deck.
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Tod
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RE: Boeing 747 Upper Deck - First Or Business?

Fri Dec 16, 2005 5:18 am

Quoting 1337Delta764 (Reply 26):
With the likely use of composites, the airframe would be lighter than a 747-8, therefore allowing its use

Although weight is an important consideration, space is also extremely valuable.

Quoting 1337Delta764 (Reply 26):
IMO the 747 replacement should have two full decks and a third partial deck.

Then it wouldn't be a 747 would it?

Tod
 
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1337Delta764
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RE: Boeing 747 Upper Deck - First Or Business?

Fri Dec 16, 2005 5:26 am

Quoting Tod (Reply 27):
Then it wouldn't be a 747 would it?

Exactly. It would be the 747's successor, and also an A380 killer.
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willyj
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RE: Boeing 747 Upper Deck - First Or Business?

Fri Dec 16, 2005 5:38 am

With LH's first class product they fit 16 seats upstairs. AF has/had a similar sized F seat on their 744s and they fit 13 seats in the nose. So, LH fit 3 more seats upstairs. In business, with the 60" pitch so many airlines are using today, 17 or 18 seats fit in the nose, while generally 22 - 26 seats are placed upstairs. I suppose LH just wanted to have a slightly larger F class cabin than most other carriers, or perhaps they were trying to set themselves apart?

I agree though, I much prefer the nose to the upper deck.
 
jwenting
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RE: Boeing 747 Upper Deck - First Or Business?

Fri Dec 16, 2005 5:53 am

And then of course there are airlines that operate a 2 class layout and so don't have any first class seats to place, like KLM.
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fbgdavidson
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RE: Boeing 747 Upper Deck - First Or Business?

Fri Dec 16, 2005 6:08 am

Quoting Tod (Reply 24):
All good, except the bins.

I find the bins are superb. I don't find the need to bring on 82" rollaboards (and if I did I'd get the crew to put it in the cupboard). I usually carry the one laptop bag (ironically I don't put a laptop in it) and maybe a carrier bag if I have too much to drink and decide to buy my girlfriend some stuff.

The bins also double up as nice shelves to put stuff on
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Tod
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RE: Boeing 747 Upper Deck - First Or Business?

Fri Dec 16, 2005 6:24 am

Quoting Fbgdavidson (Reply 31):
The bins also double up as nice shelves to put stuff on

The sidewall stowbins are my favorite. You can stash all you little mid-flight amusements in there. I designed my first set back around 1980 and they had little tiny gas springs instead of the click latch setup you see on modern ones. It worked great, except it would toss your drink off the lid if you pushed the latch button without thinking.

Tod
 
roseflyer
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RE: Boeing 747 Upper Deck - First Or Business?

Fri Dec 16, 2005 8:16 am

Quoting 1337Delta764 (Reply 26):
With the likely use of composites, the airframe would be lighter than a 747-8, therefore allowing its use.

The point of using composites to make a plane lighter is to lower the weight, not make room for more extravagant things. The cost of an elevator in terms of weight is way too high unless it is absolutely necessary. Some planes have elevators for the galleys and crew use but that isn't large enough and comfortable enough for passenger use.
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