WunalaYann
Topic Author
Posts: 2128
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Long Haul In Economy

Sun Jun 18, 2006 1:26 pm

Ok.

This subject has been discussed countless times. But I am trying to test the "market" at the moment.

I am wondering about the sustainability of current travel conditions in economy class on long haul flights. I define long haul as 8 hours and beyond, non-stop.

Even on the finest airlines, I find travel conditions terrible. I know, everything has a price. And this is my point. A return ticket MEL-CDG costs an average of AUS$2,000, €1,250 or US$1,500. Roughly, with little seasonal variation.

I do not care about fancy food, supermodel F/As, soft drinks or toothbrush kits. But I do care about ROOM, width and length.

I am willing to pay AUS$3,000 for the same ticket, that is 50% more. 50%. Would I get, say, 35% more elbow and leg room? 35% more reclining angle?

A B777 can accomodate 10 abreast in 3-4-3 config. Could we do a premium economy in 2-4-2 (20% more room) or even 2-3-2 (30% more room), with the matching wider seats?

In a 772, you often find 250 seats in economy, at 10 abreasts. That is 25 rows. Cut it down to 20 (-20%), in a 8-abreast config. So that is 36% less seats (160 seats).

The airline gets 36% less potential revenue (not including the payload gains with fewer pax and their luggage), but gets paid 50% more for each seat.

That seems like a very good deal for all parties involved, to me.

Now of course if it does not exist, or if it is not so common, there must be a very good reason.

Fire away!!!  Smile

Cheers.
 
Ken777
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RE: Long Haul In Economy

Sun Jun 18, 2006 1:33 pm

Too many people traveling in the cattle car section don't have the spare money to pay the extra. When I was starting my business I couldn't justify paying more than the cheapest fare - and we're talking about between LAX & SYD. that extra 50% pays for a lot of hotel rooms - especially when you're talking about families with kids. In your example, a husband & wife worth two kids would be facing an extra AUS$4,000 - which almost covers the cost of a week at Disney World.

Some airlines, like BA, do recognize that there is a market for something a little better, but not all the way to Business. BA has World Traveler Plus, which is basically what you're talking about, and some other airlines have followed.
 
Jeremy
Posts: 574
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RE: Long Haul In Economy

Sun Jun 18, 2006 1:42 pm

Yes, do try BA World Traveler Plus.
I flew PHL-LHR in Plus and it was fantastic! It was basically an economy service but with much more room.
You are now free to be sexually harassed and then terminated for filing a complaint--Southwest Airlines to me.
 
WunalaYann
Topic Author
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RE: Long Haul In Economy

Sun Jun 18, 2006 4:52 pm

Ok.

I was thinking that with the increase in frequent long distance travelling for personal and business purposes, combined with an ageing customer base in the western world, there would be a request for more room.

You point to more room with economy service. I think that is right. On the fine airlines serving the Kangaroo route (QF, SQ, BA, CX, EK, QR, MH, the Japanese, etc.), economy service is almost always brilliant. Genuine smiles, excellent IFE, good food, immaculate aircraft, fancy airports, etc.

So yes, I am checking World Traveler Plus on BA, will let you know!

In any case, the idea of a three-class config. like economy, premium economy and super business could probably score a few points...

Who are the others that have followed BA's example?

Cheers.
 
WunalaYann
Topic Author
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RE: Long Haul In Economy

Sun Jun 18, 2006 4:55 pm

Ok.

World Traveler Plus is not operated on MEL-LHR.

Great.

Any suggestions?  Smile
 
reyes27
Posts: 77
Joined: Sun Jan 01, 2006 6:28 pm

RE: Long Haul In Economy

Sun Jun 18, 2006 5:09 pm

I was quite impressed with BR's deluxe economy service, well with the extra $300 on a $1350 USD ticket between PHX-HKG
 
antskip
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RE: Long Haul In Economy

Sun Jun 18, 2006 5:37 pm

A search using travel.com.au suggests you could travel business class for A$3,800 with TG?
 
VHXLR8
Posts: 487
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RE: Long Haul In Economy

Sun Jun 18, 2006 6:25 pm

Quoting WunalaYann (Reply 4):
World Traveler Plus is not operated on MEL-LHR.

Most possibly because BA doesn't operate MEL-LHR anymore  Sad
You could always do world traveller plus SYD-LHR; the add-on MEL-SYD sector is oftn included in the fare.
 
EI747SYDNEY
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RE: Long Haul In Economy

Sun Jun 18, 2006 7:30 pm

Why dont you try the Gulf Air prices, I know they have business at a very reasonable price.

Rob  Smile
''Live life on the edge, Live each and every day like it's your last, Hell you only live once''
 
ManchesterMAN
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Joined: Fri Sep 26, 2003 10:57 pm

RE: Long Haul In Economy

Sun Jun 18, 2006 7:35 pm

Quoting WunalaYann (Reply 3):
Who are the others that have followed BA's example?

VS
NZ
TG
BD
BR
Flown: A300,A319,A320,A321,A330,A340.A380,717,727,737,747,757,767,777,DC9,DC10,MD11,MD80,F100,F50,ERJ,E190,CRJ,BAe146,Da
 
Carpethead
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RE: Long Haul In Economy

Sun Jun 18, 2006 8:07 pm

Quoting WunalaYann (Thread starter):
A B777 can accomodate 10 abreast in 3-4-3 config.

More typical layout for a 777 is 9-abreast. 3-3-3 or 2-5-2.
I don't recommend any 777 with 10-abreast with flight time over 2-hours and that's even if you are skinny.

Some airlines such as NZ and NH offer a premium economy class with additional elbow space and leg-room. UA offers economy plus without tacking too much on the travel bill.
 
6thfreedom
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RE: Long Haul In Economy

Sun Jun 18, 2006 8:30 pm

Quoting WunalaYann (Reply 4):
Great.

Any suggestions?

air nz... LHR via AKL and LAX?
 
NZ8800
Posts: 408
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RE: Long Haul In Economy

Sun Jun 18, 2006 8:35 pm

You could try with NZ's premium economy, MEL - AKL - LAX - LHR.

Flight NZ6 MEL-AKL dep 1200 arr 1720, flight time 3h20, lunch served, 744.

4h25min layover at AKL.

Flight NZ2 AKL-LAX dep 2145 arr 1440, flight time 11h55min, dinner and breakfast served, 744.

Flight continues two hours later. NB: NZ have special arrangements with the US Department Of Homeland Security for passengers transiting LAX on flights NZ1 and NZ2.

Flight NZ2 LAX-LHR dep 1640 arr 1100 flight time 10h20min, dinner and breakfast served, 744.

Those flights operate from MEL seven days per week.
MDZWTA ~ Mobile Disaster Zone When Travelling Abroad
 
antskip
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RE: Long Haul In Economy

Mon Jun 19, 2006 10:38 am

Quoting NZ8800 (Reply 12):
You could try with NZ's premium economy, MEL - AKL - LAX - LHR

A 3 1/2 hour NZ domestic-standard flight to AKL, and another 4 1/2 hrs sitting around at the airport there there before you really begin the journey itself is one heck of a price for a cattle premium to the wrong destination (London, not Paris) for the same number of dollars as Business class on TG to Paris.
 
NZ8800
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RE: Long Haul In Economy

Mon Jun 19, 2006 10:56 am

Oops - right you are Antskip - read that one wrong - sorry!
MDZWTA ~ Mobile Disaster Zone When Travelling Abroad
 
HKGKaiTak
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RE: Long Haul In Economy

Mon Jun 19, 2006 12:08 pm

Quoting WunalaYann (Reply 3):
So yes, I am checking World Traveler Plus on BA, will let you know!

I too was quite impressed with BA's World Traveller Plus when I flew SYD-LHR couple months ago (see my posts in the Trip Reports forum). It was a lifesaver for such a long flight but 24 hours in a plane is still 24 hours in a plane.

Yet I'm not convinced it's worth the money they're charging over discounted economy (disclaimer: I travelled on a discounted travel agent ticket)

VS also flies SYD-LHR with premium economy, so that's worth looking into for you if you're willing to transit in SYD.
4 Engines 4 LongHaul
 
WunalaYann
Topic Author
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RE: Long Haul In Economy

Mon Jun 19, 2006 12:42 pm

Thanks for all the information guys.

No worries for transit in Sydney.

I have heard that TG's business was one of the cheapest, if not the cheapest.

My point was that there could be something between cattle and business.

EK does operate its 777 in 3-4-3 config. I can tell you that out of (unfortunate) first-hand experience. Excellent service, though.

But I do not follow. You guys say BA does not operate MEL-LHR anymore. So how do I book a ticket on BA? Will they charge MEL-SYD $500?

And is BA's frequent flyer system good and affordable (unlike QF's)?

Many many thanks again for your help!
 
goodmanr
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RE: Long Haul In Economy

Mon Jun 19, 2006 12:45 pm

SQ from NYC has a ton of room in Y
USAirways - Chairmans Gold
 
antskip
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RE: Long Haul In Economy

Mon Jun 19, 2006 12:53 pm

I tried the BA site for premium cattle, but it seemed to say they didn't have it on this run. Do they? But VS does - @ A$3,700. But both go to LHR, not CDG. The intial post puts up some interesting points - and suggests maybe there is a place in the market for premium cattle from MEL to Europe/UK. The positive experience of premium for NZ and BA seem to be show it is an interesting growth area. Maybe NZ could expand it further...?
 
star_world
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RE: Long Haul In Economy

Mon Jun 19, 2006 12:54 pm

Quoting WunalaYann (Reply 16):
So how do I book a ticket on BA? Will they charge MEL-SYD $500?

The best advice is to just book BA SYD-LHR and find another airline to take you from MEL-SYD. You should be able to get a fairly competitive fare on that segment. Likewise for the return. You'll probably find that you can book "BA" MEL-LHR but this will be a QF codeshare on MEL-SIN (or BKK) and then either BA or QF to LHR. You want to make sure you're on BA metal to get the option of booking WT+.

Quoting WunalaYann (Reply 16):
And is BA's frequent flyer system good and affordable (unlike QF's)?

BA and QF are both in oneworld. Some time ago BA changed the entry rules for their FF program so that anyone based in Australia would have to register with QF instead, so I don't believe you can even register for BA's Exec Club program. In any case, that's probably a good thing - the BA program is notoriously bad unless you're flying on full-fare tickets; if you book discount economy you get 25% miles and 0% elite qualifying miles. This wouldn't be the case in WT+ but, like I already said, that's probably irrelevant.
 
WunalaYann
Topic Author
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RE: Long Haul In Economy

Mon Jun 19, 2006 12:57 pm

Maybe the costs of reconfiguring some aircraft is simply prohibitive for airlines to offer this premium economy on too many routes...

I also forgot to mention that with increasing obesity in western countries, the issue of room might become more accute in the next few years. Being a politically-sensitive subject, maybe this argument belongs on the non-av forum but I am just trying to gauge trends...

Thanks again for all the answers!
 
warreng24
Posts: 573
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RE: Long Haul In Economy

Mon Jun 19, 2006 1:00 pm

UA has "EconomyPlus"

Same service as regular economy, same seat width, but slighty more seat pitch (leg room).
 
cairo
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RE: Long Haul In Economy

Mon Jun 19, 2006 2:50 pm

Long haul in economy is torture. If the plane is full you don't even get assured use of an armrest - you just have to sit there with your arms in your lap praying to God that you will get there faster without going completely inane. Anyway, thats the way it affects me. If you are hungover or over 5 foot 10 tall or unable to sleep in uncomofrtable positions or just naturally irritable, forget it.

Wunala, I've been toying with your idea and the issue for a while and a couple of things have I determined:

1. the human body takes up the exact same amount of space regardless of the position it is in. Lie down or sit in a seat - it takes the same amount of space. You just have to figure out a way to configure a coach cabin in a way where everyone can lie down.

2. Food, drinks, and even IFE I think most coach flyers could live without if they could just lie in a sleeping position.

My solution:
http://kugelfisch.schucan.com/picture/Japan/Nagasaki-capsule_hotel-Gakudo.jpg


This is a Japanese capsule hotel where Tokyo businessmen pass out after a night of binge drinking. Cozy, isn't it? A bit like a morgue, I know, but I'd rather get in one of those than seat 61E in the God forsaken back of United Economy. It could be done with the same pax load as conventional seating.

Or, if you stack them 3 high, like in the navy...and you took out the overhead bins, my calculations are that you could use these and INCREASE the number of pax carried versus traditional coach seating.


Give me that over 'economy' seating anyday!

International airlines are horribly uninnovative and it will take aggressive free thinking to start a 747 or A380 centered airline that finally eliminates economy-torture-seats once and for all. Join me in my crusade!

Cairo

[Edited 2006-06-19 07:53:02]
 
WunalaYann
Topic Author
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RE: Long Haul In Economy

Mon Jun 19, 2006 4:10 pm

Interesting view...  Smile

Very convenient when you travel with your wife/gf...  Wink Ok, let's move on.

Unfortunately more seriously, I have checked for World Traveller + on BA's Australian website for SYD-LHR and it is not available on that route!!!!!!!!!

And VS's premium economy goes well into the $3800s...

Are you sure BA offers WT+ on SYD-LHR?

Cheers.
 
antskip
Posts: 829
Joined: Mon Jan 02, 2006 8:53 am

RE: Long Haul In Economy

Mon Jun 19, 2006 6:14 pm

Quoting WunalaYann (Reply 23):
I have checked for World Traveller + on BA's Australian website for SYD-LHR and it is not available on that route!!!!!!!!!

exactly what I found...Australia is not well served with super-economy...other than business class, you might be best travelling economy in short hops, and spending your dollars on the way...
 
HKGKaiTak
Posts: 971
Joined: Sat Jun 25, 2005 9:48 am

RE: Long Haul In Economy

Tue Jun 20, 2006 8:51 am

Quoting WunalaYann (Reply 23):
Are you sure BA offers WT+ on SYD-LHR?

They definitely do on BA9/10 and BA15/16. Any other flights with BA flight numbers are operated on QF metal which obviously don't have a premium econ section.

There's only 32 seats on each flight and they're more often than not full months in advance (remember both flights pick-up in BKK or SIN as well). It was hard enough for me to find a shoulder season date with availability 3 months out.

IIRC with the WT+ you get a "free" connection (ie you pay the taxes) to any point in Europe with a BA flight number, so no problem if you want to go to CDG.
4 Engines 4 LongHaul
 
star_world
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RE: Long Haul In Economy

Tue Jun 20, 2006 9:19 am

Quoting Antskip (Reply 24):
Australia is not well served with super-economy

Every BA longhaul a/c is equipped with WT+.

As mentioned above, make sure you're not looking at the QF codeshares.
 
antskip
Posts: 829
Joined: Mon Jan 02, 2006 8:53 am

RE: Long Haul In Economy

Tue Jun 20, 2006 11:26 am

Quoting Star_world (Reply 26):
Every BA longhaul a/c is equipped with WT+.

As mentioned above, make sure you're not looking at the QF codeshares.

Thanks for that! One can be easily deceived when airlines (including BA) do not make it clear that one is booking on another airline - one reason I very much dislike the QF-BA code-sharing arrangement. However, the BA/NZ premium-economy experiment sound amazingly successful. Well done to BA, firstly - and secondly to NZ for learning from BA.
 
WunalaYann
Topic Author
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RE: Long Haul In Economy

Tue Jun 20, 2006 12:02 pm

Quoting Star_world (Reply 26):
As mentioned above, make sure you're not looking at the QF codeshares.

Got it!

Now the question is the dinero...

Ouch. $3850

 Smile
 
HKGKaiTak
Posts: 971
Joined: Sat Jun 25, 2005 9:48 am

RE: Long Haul In Economy

Tue Jun 20, 2006 12:56 pm

Quoting WunalaYann (Reply 28):
Ouch. $3850

Ouch indeed!

Well at least that's with taxes, but still about $1500 more expensive than your discounted Y with BA ... but they fill up that cabin, so what can you say?
4 Engines 4 LongHaul

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