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Qantas Upgrades A380 Seats

New shift will add business class and premium economy seating to aircraft.

In addition to planning the world’s longest airline route, Qantas wants to change their image even further by updating their fleet of Airbus A380 aircraft. Australian Business Traveller reports the airline debuted the upgrade plans during their annual earnings call.

The vision calls for adding six additional business class seats to the upper deck, transitioning them to their latest Business Suite product. Doing so allows the carrier to nearly double their premium economy seating in the top deck, leaving economy class to the main deck of the aircraft. At the front of the aircraft, a larger lounge area will be installed for first class and business class flyers.

The Business Suites will feature a layflat bed, combined with a 16-inch in-flight entertainment screen and full aisle access. Each seat will also have a divider, allowing flyers to choose privacy as they rest on the long-haul flights.

Premium economy will move to a 2-3-2 layout across the upper deck of the aircraft, featuring a seat advertised as 10 percent wider than the previous product, USB and AC charging outlets and ergonomically designed seating for passenger comfort. The in-flight entertainment screens will also increase in size.

Minimal changes are coming to the first class and economy products, which will receive a refresh instead of a full makeover. Passengers at the back of the main deck will receive new seat cushions and upholstery, along with a new in-flight entertainment options. First class will receive larger in-flight entertainment screens, along with refreshed seats, bedding and pillow menus. Very few details have emerged about in-flight lounge, shared by first class and business class travelers, described as a “larger space” for premium passengers.

Those excited for the changes will have to wait for the upgrades to take shape. According to Qantas, the first A380 upgrades will begin in the summer of 2019. Retrofitting all 12 superjumbo aircraft is expected to be complete by 2020.

[Photo: Shutterstock]

Comments are Closed.
scooternva August 29, 2017

Perhaps they are removing some first class seats? Meanwhile, as a (ahem) Person of Width, I love that they are making their premium economy seats 10% wider. I wish U.S. domestic airlines would offer a premium economy seat that increased the seat width as well as the front-back pitch. I'd gladly pay a 25% surcharge for United to put 2-3-2 seating in their international 777 premium economy class, rather than the cramped 3-3-3. Heck, I'd even go as high as a 35% if they whittled it down to 2-2-2. But, that will never happen I'm sure... United and American would turn me over and shake me at the gate if they thought they could get any more money out of me *without* spending a penny more on capital investment. Gah, our domestic airlines truly bite.

Himeno August 29, 2017

The original QF A380 config was 14F/72J/32W/332Y. That was changed in 2012/2013 to 14F/64J/35W/371Y. Which was done by removing the rear J mini cabin, moving W forward into that space, adding a Y cabin to the rear of the upper deck and adding 9 Y seats in the main lower deck along with removing a number of restrooms. That will now get changed to 14F/70J/60W/341Y, including removing the Y mini cabin and replacing the current seats with the new 787 style seats.

LukeO9 August 28, 2017

Adding business seats allows for a near doubling of premium economy seating? Hmmmm.