$850 million investment pays off in more economy, premium economy seats
Future flyers of Singapore Airlines’ flagship Airbus A380 will find double beds and swivel chairs in the front of the aircraft, with more premium economy and economy seats throughout the widebody. CNN Money reports the airline debuted their new cabin during a ceremony this week.
The world-famous Singapore Suites will remain at the front of the aircraft, with six suites available for booking. Each seating area will feature a 32-inch flat-screen TV, private vanities, full-flat beds, a captain’s seat which swivels 135 degrees and full-leather trim. In business class, dividers between seating areas can be lowered and turned into a double bed, in order to accommodate couples traveling together.
Premium economy and economy will also see an upgrade as well. An improved chair design in premium economy will give flyers more space between seats, granting more room to recline and kick out the included leg rest. In economy, flyers will be greeted with an 11-inch touchscreen personal entertainment system, which no longer need a handset to operate.
The A380 launch customer’s move is a balance of improving the customer experience and operating economics. The six suites is a reduction from their current configuration, while more economy and premium economy seats will allow Singapore to sell more seats on flights.
The remodel also allows the Star Alliance airline to stay competitive with other luxury carriers. Singapore Airlines posted a loss in the second quarter of 2017, before swinging back to the positive in the third quarter. The Singapore flag carrier intends to install the new cabins on five new A380 aircraft and retrofit the rest by 2020.