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KarelXWB
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Al Baker: Seat Comfort Opinions Are Irrelevant

Wed Jan 20, 2016 12:19 pm

Here's what QR CEO Al Baker has to say about decreasing seat comfort on 10-abreast 777s and 9-abreast 787s:

Quote:
I was reminded of the scene when I read that Qatar Airways CEO Akbar Al Baker had moved on from insisting to aviation journalists that Qatar Airways’ shrinking seat width and pitch does not affect comfort, and is now arguing that those same aviation journalists’ analytical opinion isn’t relevant — because they are aviation journalists.

Mr Al Baker suggests that only aviation journalists notice narrower seats.

...

Nine-abreast 787 seats and ten-abreast 777 seats are not comfortable, especially when combined with IFE boxes in the footwell. They’re certainly not premium.

Source
http://www.runwaygirlnetwork.com/201...atar-ceo-declares-them-irrelevant/

Perhaps he's right and Joe Sixpack does not notice the smaller seats at all?

[Edited 2016-01-20 04:20:49]
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roseflyer
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RE: Al Baker: Seat Comfort Opinions Are Irrelevant

Wed Jan 20, 2016 12:24 pm

Well a.net is obsessed with seat width. For many on is forum economy seat width is the most important factor. Even business class travelers will avoid airlines with 10 abreast 777 economy due to sympathy pains.

Airbus marketing has done a good job pushing the topic of seat width which has become a hot topic on blogs, forums and aviation journalists. Most airlines have discovered that only the enthusiasts notice the width differences. For the majority of the flying public, good IFE, good food, manageable fees, and on time performance is what people remember.

It all comes down to flying economy sucks and most people are uncomfortable and don't have a scale of uncomfortableness.
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RE: Al Baker: Seat Comfort Opinions Are Irrelevant

Wed Jan 20, 2016 12:36 pm

Quoting KarelXWB (Thread starter):
Mr Al Baker suggests that only aviation journalists notice narrower seats.

I concur with him on this. Average Y passenger usually only cares about the fare, hence airlines such approach seems to be reasonable.

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RE: Al Baker: Seat Comfort Opinions Are Irrelevant

Wed Jan 20, 2016 12:55 pm

Quoting KarelXWB (Thread starter):
Nine-abreast 787 seats and ten-abreast 777 seats are not comfortable, especially when combined with IFE boxes in the footwell. They’re certainly not premium.

But it's economy class though, its not really mean't to be premium...  

But I do agree about the IFE boxes though. Those are annoying in any configuration.
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RE: Al Baker: Seat Comfort Opinions Are Irrelevant

Wed Jan 20, 2016 12:58 pm

If you travel enough you notice. Reality is a lot of people don't travel enough to notice.
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RE: Al Baker: Seat Comfort Opinions Are Irrelevant

Wed Jan 20, 2016 1:06 pm

Quoting KarelXWB (Thread starter):
Perhaps he's right and Joe Sixpack does not notice the smaller seats at all?

Well, this guy certainly does:  

For me, price is important. I was looking for flights to India, and found one with QR 77W/787 for around E600, and one with 9W A333/A320 for E800. I'll still go for the latter.
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RE: Al Baker: Seat Comfort Opinions Are Irrelevant

Wed Jan 20, 2016 1:07 pm

Quoting frigatebird (Reply 5):
Well, this guy certainly does:  

Well... that guy is an airliners.net member... kinda makes

Quoting roseflyer (Reply 1):
Well a.net is obsessed with seat width.

That point.  
 
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RE: Al Baker: Seat Comfort Opinions Are Irrelevant

Wed Jan 20, 2016 1:12 pm

That depends on how much pain you are inflicting on the pax. Once you reach something like 9 abreast in a A330, you are reaching the point when people will notice.

[Edited 2016-01-20 05:17:23]
 
parapente
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RE: Al Baker: Seat Comfort Opinions Are Irrelevant

Wed Jan 20, 2016 1:12 pm

It is hard for any of us to judge really (A Net or Journo's) - as to how much average people know or notice.I guess most people do not fly frequently enough - and on different aircraft to notice.Which is how arlines get away with it.

Having said that business colleagues of mine (who are not plane nerds) do note differences - precisely because they are frequent flyers - often on long distances- where sleeping is involved. Often those differences are between different J class offerings but also sometimes Y.

Having flown A380's a couple of times (Y) I can easily see why people refer to the '380 effect' because the difference of seat and general space/ambiance is so obvious.

There was a recent thread on BA changing policy on their seating on their new 789's from that which they have just introduced on their initial 788's.They are (they say) making them wider (how I don't know).But the key point was that BA (stated) were doing this as a reaction to customer comments -read complaints? This would be an indication (I feel) that 'normal' (not us) consumers may have reached a 'tipping point'.
But what can they do unless there is a real choice - when most times there isn't.

Personally speaking on day trips in Y anything up to 5/6 hours it is tolerable to be in a 787 style y seat.But if it involved a long (sleeping) journey I would seek out the best (read widest) seat such as an A380 or BA 777's with 9 abreast.
 
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RE: Al Baker: Seat Comfort Opinions Are Irrelevant

Wed Jan 20, 2016 1:34 pm

Why don't you ask that to everyone who complains about the person next to them being too large, and to those larger passengers they are all complaining about.

Lack of accessible information does not mean that people don't care.
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roseflyer
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RE: Al Baker: Seat Comfort Opinions Are Irrelevant

Wed Jan 20, 2016 1:55 pm

Even people who frequently fly rarely notice the difference the seat width difference unless you tell them about it. Most pay more attention to aisle vs window vs the golden empty middle seat. 99% of people will say a 737 economy seat was wider Han an A320 if on their last flight on a 737 they had an aisle and previous A320 flight were in a middle. Similarly if they had an open middle seat, they would have thought that seat was best.

Airlines and passengers loved 2-5-2 seating configurations when load factors were 70% and the middle middle seat was rarely used. Once load factors went above 80% or 90% including non revs everyone screamed to go 3-3-3.

The seat width debate has been going on since the 1970s. 747s were originally 9 abreast and DC10s were 8 abreast. It got rekindled about 10 - 15 years ago when Airbus started publishing that the A320 was wider than the 737 after Boeing advertised that the 777 had wider seats than the A330.
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RE: Al Baker: Seat Comfort Opinions Are Irrelevant

Wed Jan 20, 2016 2:15 pm

Interesting anicdote that a friend of mine who will be travelling to HK next month and has switched from VS to BA because the new virgin aircrafts seats are 'too tight'.

This person couldn't tell a Fokker 100 from a 777, but her last HK trip was her first 787 round trip.

VS was about €150 cheaper than BA this time around. Sample of one, but interesting anyway.
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RE: Al Baker: Seat Comfort Opinions Are Irrelevant

Wed Jan 20, 2016 2:15 pm

Wow Al Baker says something intelligent. Must be a first! If people paid for wider economy seats QR would be driving higher fares and profitability than the competition. But they're not.
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RE: Al Baker: Seat Comfort Opinions Are Irrelevant

Wed Jan 20, 2016 2:17 pm

Quoting seahawk (Reply 7):
That depends on how much pain you are inflicting on the pax. Once you reach something like 9 abreast in a A330, you are reaching the point when people will notice.

and on top of that, there's an additional gap between when a consumer finally notices and when they reach a point where they're actually willing to inconvenience themselves in other ways (longer routing, higher fare, etc.) to avoid what they've finally noticed is a seat configuration that's too cramped for their liking.
 
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RE: Al Baker: Seat Comfort Opinions Are Irrelevant

Wed Jan 20, 2016 2:18 pm

Quoting roseflyer (Reply 10):
Even people who frequently fly rarely notice the difference the seat width difference unless you tell them about it.

Flying from JER 25 years ago I found a 6 abreast 737-200 to be much more comfortable than a 6 abreast BAe 146.

That was before I became an old codger who worries about lumbar support and awkwardly positioned headrests as well as seat width, which I do now!
 
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RE: Al Baker: Seat Comfort Opinions Are Irrelevant

Wed Jan 20, 2016 2:22 pm

Quoting JerseyFlyer (Reply 14):

Quoting roseflyer (Reply 10):
Even people who frequently fly rarely notice the difference the seat width difference unless you tell them about it.

Flying from JER 25 years ago I found a 6 abreast 737-200 to be much more comfortable than a 6 abreast BAe 146.


I do believe that. The BAE 146 had an incredibly tight cabin. It was not just seat width, but cabin height as well made that plane uncomfortable.
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RE: Al Baker: Seat Comfort Opinions Are Irrelevant

Wed Jan 20, 2016 2:31 pm

Quoting roseflyer (Reply 15):
It was not just seat width, but cabin height as well made that plane uncomfortable.

And that whine of the flaps which scared novice 146 flyers senseless.

5 abreast 146 was a pleasure. 6 abreast on a full flight is horrific I think it's row 6 F has a metal casing / Strut just behind the cabin interior decor that freezes in winter - once my coat stuck / froze to it.
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ec99
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RE: Al Baker: Seat Comfort Opinions Are Irrelevant

Wed Jan 20, 2016 2:32 pm

Quoting roseflyer (Reply 10):
Even people who frequently fly rarely notice the difference the seat width difference unless you tell them about it. Most pay more attention to aisle vs window vs the golden empty middle seat. 99% of people will say a 737 economy seat was wider Han an A320 if on their last flight on a 737 they had an aisle and previous A320 flight were in a middle. Similarly if they had an open middle seat, they would have thought that seat was best.

This is dead on. A.netters love talking about seat width but it is only a small part of the overall comfort equation and it usually gets blown out of perspective. Being stuck in a middle seat on a 6-hour transcon ride from JFK-SFO is going to suck whether you are on a 737 or A320 whereas the same ride in an aisle seat with an empty middle seat is going to be pretty pleasant whatever plane you are on. Moreover, I would be interested to know how seat pitch relates to perception of seat width. I would bet a lot of money that the average passenger after flying on a 737 with 32-inches of seat pitch and an A320 with 30 inches of seat pitch would say the 737 seat was wider. Soft product also affects perception including food, inflight entertainment and general service.

That said, all things equal, I would of course prefer the wider seat of the A320 or nine across 777. It is just that all things are usually not equal.
 
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RE: Al Baker: Seat Comfort Opinions Are Irrelevant

Wed Jan 20, 2016 2:45 pm

Quoting ec99 (Reply 17):

  

and even a comfortably wide seat can very quickly become a miserable experience if you're seated next to or (god forbid) between one or two people who are the average width of, well, the average American these days  

as you say, things are usually not equal.
 
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RE: Al Baker: Seat Comfort Opinions Are Irrelevant

Wed Jan 20, 2016 2:47 pm

Quoting frigatebird (Reply 5):
For me, price is important. I was looking for flights to India, and found one with QR 77W/787 for around E600, and one with 9W A333/A320 for E800. I'll still go for the latter.

Except, 9W operates 737s!   

By the way, your sentence appears contradictory. If price is important, why go for the option pricier by 200 Euros?
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RE: Al Baker: Seat Comfort Opinions Are Irrelevant

Wed Jan 20, 2016 2:53 pm

Quoting Spiderguy252 (Reply 19):
If price is important, why go for the option pricier by 200 Euros?

Price IS important, but so is VALUE. I'm not frigatebird, but I've frequently paid a bit more for a less painful seat (including upgrading from Y to Premium Economy internationally and Y to Y+ domestically, even if it costs $200-$300 more on an 8 hour flight.
 
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RE: Al Baker: Seat Comfort Opinions Are Irrelevant

Wed Jan 20, 2016 3:32 pm

Quoting KarelXWB (Thread starter):
Perhaps he's right and Joe Sixpack does not notice the smaller seats at all?

Yes, people NOTICE but they typically won't pay more money to do anything about it, so the pitch/width will continue to decrease till people refuse to fly.

I think these things are cyclical. A long time ago Gordon Bethune (CO's CEO) said if you make the pizza too cheap no one will eat it. The industry is spending $billions re-gauging all their Y cabins and to me the inevitable outcome is that it will bottom out at some point where people will just totally avoid flying and then it will rise to some somewhat more acceptable standard. The bottom hasn't hit yet but people above are already listing 'pain points' that people are already actively avoiding. I know once I get burned by something (such as unacceptable pitch/width or an unexpected fee) I actively book away from that carrier. Luckily for me there still are acceptable alternatives for the routes I use. I suspect they still are for most if you look hard enough but it seems intra-EU travel is really going to the dogs. The problem for the industry will be that ordering the new cabins and doing the refitting takes a very long time, and they may be stuck with an unacceptable product due to the lag effect.

In other words, it's just another form of 'race to the bottom'.
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RE: Al Baker: Seat Comfort Opinions Are Irrelevant

Wed Jan 20, 2016 4:03 pm

Pundits love to complain that people won't pay for wider seats. It's not that they won't pay, it's that people won't pay a high premium.

Premium Economy is a great example. Some carrier PE do quite well. When you look at the actual comparative price (not advertised prices - the real price quote one gets when booking a flight) those that do well have a reasonable price premium over the normal seat. It is when you start asking passengers to pay twice as much for a gain of an inch in either width or legroom that they balk - it is not that valuable to them.
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RE: Al Baker: Seat Comfort Opinions Are Irrelevant

Wed Jan 20, 2016 4:11 pm

Quoting BestWestern (Reply 11):
Interesting anicdote that a friend of mine who will be travelling to HK next month and has switched from VS to BA because the new virgin aircrafts seats are 'too tight'.

I saw a tweet from a friend of my wife. He is a frequent flyer to JNB with VS, but when VS switched to the 789 he was very dissatisfied, and seriously considered flying with SA in the future, with their A332. And he is not an aviation geek, although can tell a Boeing from an Airbus.

Quoting roseflyer (Reply 15):
I do believe that. The BAE 146 had an incredibly tight cabin. It was not just seat width, but cabin height as well made that plane uncomfortable.

   I had one flight with a BAE 146, I was so happy when I could leave that aircraft!

Quoting Spiderguy252 (Reply 19):
Quoting frigatebird (Reply 5):For me, price is important. I was looking for flights to India, and found one with QR 77W/787 for around E600, and one with 9W A333/A320 for E800. I'll still go for the latter.

Except, 9W operates 737s!

By the way, your sentence appears contradictory. If price is important, why go for the option pricier by 200 Euros?

Thank you for the correction. You are right I made 2 mistakes in 1 post. The connecting 9W flight is indeed a 737, but for a 2,5 hour flight I can manage that   Mixed things up. And so I did with my next sentence. A comfortable flight is more important to me than the lowest price, and I don't mind paying 100-200 euro extra for a comfortable seat.

Unfortunately, the choice is often a bit more seat pitch in Economy with the same narrow seats (KL's economy confort), or paying twice the amount for Economy plus, which is pretty close to being old style business class (BA, CX, SQ). I wish there could be something in between, like 9Y 777s or 8Y 787s with just 20% premium.
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RE: Al Baker: Seat Comfort Opinions Are Irrelevant

Wed Jan 20, 2016 4:37 pm

6 abreast 35 inch pitch, the old old standard was comfortable. I always enjoyed the trip. Flew as often as I could afford it. Current coach - flying is always my last option. If I need to I do. IFE gear in the foot place should be banned.
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RE: Al Baker: Seat Comfort Opinions Are Irrelevant

Wed Jan 20, 2016 4:41 pm

Funny coming out of his mouth, considering QR is the LAST of ME3 to convert to 10 abreast 777s. But then again, A.net is a lot less fun without this Court Jester.
 
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RE: Al Baker: Seat Comfort Opinions Are Irrelevant

Wed Jan 20, 2016 5:01 pm

It was t until I flew a TUI 8-abreast 767 that I started to really think about it. Sitting next to someone my size -- 6'1, 230lbs is uncomfortable in any economy seat-- you need wide armrests to accommodate shoulder width. The 16.5" TUI seat though was just torture, and combined with the lack of knee space made for a tortuous flight.

But, when you add in back problems, the limitations with physical seat size can become much more pronounced, which is what I think will eventually provide the necessary pushback.
 
ec99
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RE: Al Baker: Seat Comfort Opinions Are Irrelevant

Wed Jan 20, 2016 5:16 pm

Quoting JHwk (Reply 26):
But, when you add in back problems, the limitations with physical seat size can become much more pronounced, which is what I think will eventually provide the necessary pushback.

Pushback has been mentioned numerous times on this thread. I think in many ways we are already seeing it with the growth of economy plus/comfort/extra etc.. I think ultimately the US3 have it right in that they give you 4-6 inches of extra legroom for a 10-20% premium. This provides a way for people who are willing to pay a little more to have a far more enjoyable flight. Granted these seats do not give extra width but 35 inches of pitch does wonders for flight comfort.

When thinking about the baseline average coach product 15 years ago, now we have economy + and economy –. Economy + for people who value comfort enough to pay a little extra and economy – for people whom care about price above all else.

I acknowledge that many Asian and European airlines are going in a different direction and making E+ seats basically like old business class and business class like old first class. This does the average passenger less good since these E+ seats cost way more than a normal economy seat (I would say between 50% and 100% more on average). There is no way for someone traveling on leisure to pay a little extra for a few more inches of room in coach
 
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kasimir
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RE: Al Baker: Seat Comfort Opinions Are Irrelevant

Wed Jan 20, 2016 5:46 pm

I call BS on Al Baker, the general public certainly notices if a seat is more comfortable compared to others.

The thing is that a lot of the traveling folks don't voice their opinion as much as we do here or the aviation journalists. The people that don't care too much are the casual flyers, that maybe fly once per year longhaul for vacation or other personal reasons. These people in general just want to get to their final destination as cheap as possible and are willing to sacrifice some amount of comfort.
On the other hand, regular longhaul customers and business customers (that don't fly business class), will and are voicing their opinion about seat comfort, especially if there are noticeable discrepancies between between plane models within an airline fleet (like QR 787 vs A350).

My biggest complaint in general are the IFE boxes under the seat, especially since QR A350's show that the IFE hardware can be integrated into the seat frame and no sacrifices need to be made.
Why is it not possible that the IFE hardware can also be integrated in the seat frame on their newly delivered QR 787, A380 and 77W?

Maybe a little off-topic, but why is the IFE hardware in this day and age still so big? I guess that an ipad is atleast as powerful as most of those boxes.
 
OM617
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RE: Al Baker: Seat Comfort Opinions Are Irrelevant

Wed Jan 20, 2016 5:50 pm

Seat width does not matter as much to me as pitch (BTW, I'm 6+ feet tall, 160lb). One aspect I don't think has been touched on is quality of the seat itself. I've been on older a/c with decent pitch/width (e.g. 9-across 777) but where the seat backrest is slightly bent, cushion has collapsed, whatever, making for a miserable trip. Even some premium class seats (mainly referring to older, 90's & early 2000's versions) have hurt my back or are effectively epidurals (numb from butt down). I believe a well-designed, durable seat goes a long way to alleviate 'width anxiety' and provide comfort, even over long routes.

I normally fly UA, and have found their Y+ pricing has crept to a point where it is no longer worth the price. For example, on an upcoming flight IAD-LAX-IAD, the return segment fare is around $150, while the cheapest Y+ upgrade (at this moment) is $116, roughly a 75% premium. Hardly worth it to me, especially if the "person" in front of me fully and abruptly reclines his/her seat the moment the wheels leave the runway.

It would also be really great if someone could PLEASE redesign lavs, particularly in 737s. Going #1 in the front lav of a 737, especially when turbulence hits, can get, errrr, interesting.

My 2 centavos.

OM617
 
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Faro
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RE: Al Baker: Seat Comfort Opinions Are Irrelevant

Wed Jan 20, 2016 6:21 pm

A.nutters are not at all representative of the broad travelling public, and especially economy class pax. Sure, some people will notice tighter seats but the vast majority will be more than happy with such seating if they got their tickets at a nice, cheap price.


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RE: Al Baker: Seat Comfort Opinions Are Irrelevant

Wed Jan 20, 2016 6:34 pm

Quoting OM617 (Reply 29):
Seat width does not matter as much to me as pitch (BTW, I'm 6+ feet tall, 160lb).

Sometimes I wonder if folks understand the difference and just lump them in together  
On another thread there is a discussion about the number of seats that can fit in an A321 versus a 737-900 and how they can be re-configured, I think I read one post which said that maybe using wider seats they will get extra rows.
The thread was heading into a A versus B so I may have seen incorrectly.
 
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RE: Al Baker: Seat Comfort Opinions Are Irrelevant

Wed Jan 20, 2016 7:49 pm

Quoting superjeff (Reply 20):
Price IS important, but so is VALUE. I'm not frigatebird, but I've frequently paid a bit more for a less painful seat (including upgrading from Y to Premium Economy internationally and Y to Y+ domestically, even if it costs $200-$300 more on an 8 hour flight.

Agreed 100%. $1500 for a RT flight to/from HKG sucks in Y, still sucks, but slightly less in Y+ and costs a couple hundred more. It still sucks in J even if that is on an upgrade for 60k miles and $1200 additional. Think about it, is it really worth it to spend appx $2700 and give up 60k miles (if you can even find and get the upgrade) vs paying $1500 for the same flight? Everyone is entitled to their opinion... Being miserable for 15 (well, 30) hours and keeping the cash doesn't sound so bad.
 
senatorflyer
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RE: Al Baker: Seat Comfort Opinions Are Irrelevant

Wed Jan 20, 2016 8:23 pm

Well, I do notice. To be honest, I am 194cm tall, travel very often (gold or elite plus status in all 3 alliances) but if I don't get a seat in row one on short haul or at least premium economy on long haul then I am not going to fly. For someone with my height it's just impossible to sit in todays economy seats. It's a shame really.

[Edited 2016-01-20 12:24:45]
 
JoeCanuck
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RE: Al Baker: Seat Comfort Opinions Are Irrelevant

Wed Jan 20, 2016 9:48 pm

The problem is that Y passengers expect a crappy seat, regardless of advertised width or pitch, so when they get one, they aren't surprised. In fact, they are shocked if they don't have a crappy flight....the seat being just one part of the nightmare. If one seat is marginally wider than another, they just expect that somehow it won't be nearly enough to make up for a torturous journey.

Y travel mostly sucks...at least that's what the traveling, (not blogging), public assumes. They also don't fly nearly enough to be able to make a comparison. I bet most people don't know more than a handful of others that travel more than once or twice a year. The rest might fly once ever few years...if that.

They are going to judge all airline seats by their last experience with them...and odds are, they will have no clue what the pitch or width was.

Airline enthusiasts make up a small portion of the traveling public which is why airlines can offer the product they do.
What the...?
 
Ruscoe
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RE: Al Baker: Seat Comfort Opinions Are Irrelevant

Wed Jan 20, 2016 9:53 pm

Here are some actual numbers which are based on the amount of width available for seats as opposed to the internal diameter of the fuselage.
The two are different because of where the seat base is in relation to the maximum diameter of the fuselage and also between which two points the fuselage width is measured. eg between ribs or between fuselage wall and so on.

The width figure is based on the figures in ACAPS.

For 350 9 abreast you get an 18.4" seat, with 18.1" aisles and 1.5" armrests
For 350 ten abreast you get 16.7" seat with 15" aisles and 1.5" armrests

For 787 9 abreast you get 17.87" seat with 18" aisles and 1.5" armrests
For 787 10 abreast you get 16.53" seat with 15" aisles and 1.5" armrests

For 330 8 abreast you get 18" seats with 19" aisles and 2" armrests
For 330 9 abreast you get 16.44" seat and 19" aisle and 1.5" armrests

For 767 7 abreast you get 18.29" seat with 18" aisle and 2" armrests
For 767 8 abreast you get 16.44" seat with 18' aisle and 1.5" armrests

This is what's possible or any other combination which does not exceed the available width, and airlines will do as they wish.
The surprising thing to me was that the 330 available width provides the most room when and extra seat is added.
The available widths I am using, (not the internal fuselage width), are 216.53" for the 350; 214.8" for the 787; 204" for the 330; and 184" for the 767.
There is not a great advantage for any type.

Cheers

Ruscoe
 
LSZH34
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RE: Al Baker: Seat Comfort Opinions Are Irrelevant

Wed Jan 20, 2016 10:08 pm

Quoting kasimir (Reply 28):
Why is it not possible that the IFE hardware can also be integrated in the seat frame on their newly delivered QR 787, A380 and 77W?

Good question. LX won't have IFE boxes on their new B77W...
 
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Revelation
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RE: Al Baker: Seat Comfort Opinions Are Irrelevant

Wed Jan 20, 2016 10:25 pm

Quoting JHwk (Reply 26):
It was t until I flew a TUI 8-abreast 767 that I started to really think about it. Sitting next to someone my size -- 6'1, 230lbs is uncomfortable in any economy seat-- you need wide armrests to accommodate shoulder width. The 16.5" TUI seat though was just torture, and combined with the lack of knee space made for a tortuous flight.

Indeed, arm rests need to be equal to the width of your arms plus your neighbors or there's going to be problems.

I always book an aisle so at least I have one armrest to myself and on WN I always get there early enough to "self select" an empty middle seat or a middle seat with a smaller person sitting in it so we don't bump shoulders all flight.
Wake up to find out that you are the eyes of the world
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Wake now, discover that you are the song that the morning brings
The heart has its seasons, its evenings and songs of its own
 
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enzo011
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RE: Al Baker: Seat Comfort Opinions Are Irrelevant

Wed Jan 20, 2016 10:50 pm

Well what did people expect him to say? "Yes, people notice the difference but we need to make as much money as we can so we will stick as many seats in there as we can."

Another a-net truth, seat width will either be ignored or totally overblown, depending on the manufacturer. If all Airbus aircraft added one more seat per row I am sure those who were posting that seat width isn't a big deal will continue to assert this as the truth...   
 
jacobchoi
Posts: 126
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RE: Al Baker: Seat Comfort Opinions Are Irrelevant

Wed Jan 20, 2016 11:11 pm

Quoting BestWestern (Reply 11):
Interesting anicdote that a friend of mine who will be travelling to HK next month and has switched from VS to BA because the new virgin aircrafts seats are 'too tight'.

Here in Hong Kong we all know that VS is infamous for their cramped seats.
 
DfwRevolution
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RE: Al Baker: Seat Comfort Opinions Are Irrelevant

Wed Jan 20, 2016 11:48 pm

Quoting Ruscoe (Reply 35):
The surprising thing to me was that the 330 available width provides the most room when and extra seat is added.

Surely that distinction has to go to the 787 given that 9-abreast is the "extra seat" configuration. Please tell me no one is planning 10-abreast in a 787 are they?
I have a three post per topic limit. You're welcome to have the last word.
 
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Erebus
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RE: Al Baker: Seat Comfort Opinions Are Irrelevant

Thu Jan 21, 2016 12:24 am

Quoting Ruscoe (Reply 35):
For 350 9 abreast you get an 18.4" seat, with 18.1" aisles and 1.5" armrests

For 330 8 abreast you get 18" seats with 19" aisles and 2" armrests

Long live the A330.

To be quite honest I would consider taking the A330 over the A350 given the option. I'm not a fan of the double excuse-me economy seat triplets at the window typical of pretty much every A and B aircraft there is today aside from the A330 and the 767. The latter is also good but is not going to be around for as long as the A330 in passenger service.
 
Ruscoe
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RE: Al Baker: Seat Comfort Opinions Are Irrelevant

Thu Jan 21, 2016 12:28 am

Quoting DfwRevolution (Reply 40):
Please tell me no one is planning 10-abreast in a 787 are they?

Lets hope not, but I can see it happening, with a seat width of ~~16.5". Agreed about 787 at 8 abreast but I think we can say 9 abreast is now standard, and I think Boeing always thought that is what it would come to.

Quoting JHwk (Reply 26):
you need wide armrests to accommodate shoulder width

I'm with you on that. Once a seat gets to 17" That is what is most important to me.

I know there are plenty of exceptions, but I think there is some sort of method is evolving on seat width.
IMO for long haul main line carriers 17" is the bare bones number, and for charter and short haul 16.5"

Cheers

Ruscoe
 
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jnev3289
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RE: Al Baker: Seat Comfort Opinions Are Irrelevant

Thu Jan 21, 2016 3:31 am

Quoting cloudboy (Reply 22):

How much do you think the lack of real sales training and capabilities to showcase the real benefits plays into the lack of Y+ sales? It seems like something there isn't really an emphasis on from ticket agents and I think a lot of it comes from not knowing much about it and how they can really benefit from a modest upgrade fee.
 
atct
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RE: Al Baker: Seat Comfort Opinions Are Irrelevant

Thu Jan 21, 2016 4:34 am

I care about on time performance first, price second, and seat comfort third.

atct
Trikes are for kids!
 
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Aaron747
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RE: Al Baker: Seat Comfort Opinions Are Irrelevant

Thu Jan 21, 2016 4:39 am

Quoting Ruscoe (Reply 42):
Agreed about 787 at 8 abreast but I think we can say 9 abreast is now standard, and I think Boeing always thought that is what it would come to.

Except for JAL, which still features 19" on 8-abreast 787s configured in Sky Wider II (18.9 to be exact).
If you need someone to blame / throw a rock in the air / you'll hit someone guilty
 
Aither
Posts: 1302
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RE: Al Baker: Seat Comfort Opinions Are Irrelevant

Thu Jan 21, 2016 4:41 am

Quoting roseflyer (Reply 1):
only the enthusiasts notice the width differences

also known as frequent travelers, or high yield passengers, or the most important passengers. Ask BA transatlantic fliers.

Also keep in mind that more and more the booking systems use "big data" to show the customers every benefit of each seat (to make people pay more). On Google flight, you can already read if a seat is above or below average. It will increasingly being taken into account, not because of Airbus marketing, but because some airlines are reducing the comfort of the economy class. As the difference between a good economy seat and a bad one is increasing this will make people think more about comfort.

[Edited 2016-01-20 20:48:27]
Never trust the obvious
 
Layman
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RE: Al Baker: Seat Comfort Opinions Are Irrelevant

Thu Jan 21, 2016 6:51 am

I have a simple answer to Al Baker - I will never touch his airline again and an advise my friends not to do so either.
He has ruined the 787 with his 9 abreast and that dreadful hub. And the IFE's with their sharp edges and bare metal, like a medieval torture device. How much cost would a simple plastic cover with larger radii corners have added? I would guess around $10 each. But Al Bakar cannot even deign to do that.

That man is so arrogant that he will not listen to any criticism.
 
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neutrino
Posts: 1536
Joined: Thu May 10, 2012 5:33 pm

RE: Al Baker: Seat Comfort Opinions Are Irrelevant

Thu Jan 21, 2016 9:07 am

Quoting frigatebird (Reply 5):
For me, price is important. I was looking for flights to India, and found one with QR 77W/787 for around E600, and one with 9W A333/A320 for E800. I'll still go for the latter.

That's like a what, 8 hour flight? For a potential of savings of E200 or 25%, I understand your choice. I would consider that as well. But what if the difference is 50% or more, and shorter flight? Then its a different kettle of fish, or flight of birds, if you will.
Eg. I travel often between Manila and Singapore. Realistic choice is either on a A330 8 abreast with the bells and whistles of a middling legacy airline versus a bare-bone LCC's A320 or 9 abreast A330 sans all the extras which I don't need anyway for a 3hr+ hop. If the savings is only 25%, I'll likely go with the slightly more pricey but much more comfortable alternative. Now, I just about exclusively squeeze myself in the sardine can (though not a great issue for me as I am only 5'6", 150lb) because the average difference is really big; 70%, and sometimes even more.
As you said, price - or specifically its magnitude - is important...for us plebeians anyway. But for the seriously monied class, it's a no brainer that not even the most roomy Y seat is acceptable. J or F are just about the only alphabets in their dictionary of flying. Then there's the true upper stratum of society where the private jets are the only rides in their rarified air. Different levels for different people.
Potestatem obscuri lateris nescitis
 
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neutrino
Posts: 1536
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RE: Al Baker: Seat Comfort Opinions Are Irrelevant

Thu Jan 21, 2016 9:19 am

Quoting Layman (Reply 47):

You have all the prerogative and the right to vote with your own money, same as what AAB have, to do whatever with his airline. Of course if there are many many more of you and your kind, then AAB would have to shut down his business,,,and his mouth forever.
Potestatem obscuri lateris nescitis

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