Virgin Atlantic's new Business Class seat

Old Apr 8, 19, 6:55 pm
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Virgin Atlantic's new Business Class seat

I figured I'd post this here as Air New Zealand use a licensed version of Virgin Atlantic's current Business Class seat.
The new VS A350 Upper Class will have an all-new reverse-herringbone seat. Let's hope it's a precursor for NZ's 772 replacement seat.

https://www.ausbt.com.au/virgin-atla...t-bar-revealed
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Old Apr 8, 19, 8:52 pm
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I knew someone would post this here. They look really impressive. It just shows when NZ were chasing profits in the past few years, they are now that many years late with their Business product.

Just a correction. NZ bought the license of current herringbone seats from VS many years ago and are now licensing them back to VS. VS' new seats (looks like Zodiac) mean that NZ has lost some of the licencing revenue.
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Old Apr 8, 19, 9:18 pm
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The best thing about the new Virgin Atlantic window seats is that they're facing the window rather than the rather bizarre Air NZ away from the window configuration
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Old Apr 8, 19, 10:04 pm
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Originally Posted by Xiaotung View Post
I knew someone would post this here. They look really impressive. It just shows when NZ were chasing profits in the past few years, they are now that many years late with their Business product.

Just a correction. NZ bought the license of current herringbone seats from VS many years ago and are now licensing them back to VS. VS' new seats (looks like Zodiac) mean that NZ has lost some of the licencing revenue.
Yes, the new VS seats are manufactured by Safran, which bought out Zodiac last year. It's a more evolved version of the Zodiac Cirrus seat that is fitted on CX and AA 77W.

Do you remember how NZ was the latest to the party in introducing lie flat seats in J, when they went with the VS herringbone? It's funny how 15 years later they are again latest to the party in sticking with a layout that pretty much every other airline has abandoned.
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Old Apr 8, 19, 10:54 pm
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Originally Posted by Top of climb View Post

Do you remember how NZ was the latest to the party in introducing lie flat seats in J, when they went with the VS herringbone? It's funny how 15 years later they are again latest to the party in sticking with a layout that pretty much every other airline has abandoned.
And in 2017 weíre still operating the old recliner seat on the 763 on flights up to 10hrs...

NZ is quick to the game when itís taking away from passengers/cost savings, and very slow when itís giving back to the passengers.
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Old Apr 9, 19, 1:42 am
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Originally Posted by cavemanzk View Post


And in 2017 weíre still operating the old recliner seat on the 763 on flights up to 10hrs...

NZ is quick to the game when itís taking away from passengers/cost savings, and very slow when itís giving back to the passengers.
Not that I'm a Kiwi or fly Air New Zealand frequently, but whilst the hard product may be lacking I've always found the service and food to be top notch.
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Old Apr 9, 19, 2:47 am
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I fail to see the issue with inward facing J seat. Most NZ flights I am on are night, and I donít hang out the window as we fly over Sydney or BNE.

my views on J seat:

is it comfortable? Yes

Am I comfortable when sleeping? Yes

can I see someone over the aisle? Yes, but as long as they arenít shining a light in my eyes...I donít care

I agree that the edge has gone off the rest of the product, but the seats are way better than Y.

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Old Apr 9, 19, 3:46 am
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Originally Posted by cavemanzk View Post


And in 2017 weíre still operating the old recliner seat on the 763 on flights up to 10hrs...

NZ is quick to the game when itís taking away from passengers/cost savings, and very slow when itís giving back to the passengers.
Hence consistent profitability.

The flying vanity projects lose billions
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Old Apr 9, 19, 7:15 am
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Originally Posted by RTWFF View Post
The best thing about the new Virgin Atlantic window seats is that they're facing the window rather than the rather bizarre Air NZ away from the window configuration
That's essentially the difference between the term 'herringbone' (meaning the old Virgin and current NZ design) and 'reverse herringbone' (meaning the new Virgin design plus the many other examples that preceded it, eg CX/AA/AF/VA to name just a few). It's worth remembering that the original Virgin Atlantic design was a truly revolutionary and very clever product. In fact I'm pretty sure it was the first ever 1-2-1 design, ie with the direct aisle access that we all consider now to be absolutely essential in any competitive business class product. It's just that when someone finally created the reverse herringbone, by taking the same basic idea and reversing the layout they managed to solve at a stroke the two great weaknesses of the herringbone (ie somewhat lacking in privacy and very difficult to look out the window) to the extent that the original herringbone design looked hopelessly outdated as a result. But let's not forget what a fabulous product it was for its day.

And honestly, I think it's still a pretty decent product, for the kind of routes they tend to fly. Yes, NZ has unquestionably held onto it for too long, purely because it's cheap. Yes, many other aspects of the BP experience are not what they once were. But I personally still find it a comfortable and spacious seat for lounging in, and a truly excellent seat for sleeping in. No other business seat comes close for sleeping comfort, in my experience, and in bed mode I find it feels much more private. The vast majority of NZ longhaul flights are overnight, so that works pretty well for me.

I do still think that NZ made a real error in not introducing a new seat type at the same time as bringing in the Dreamliners, especially since that execution of the BP seat is noticeably inferior, but let's not get carried away. It's far from awful. And I personally find it vastly preferable to a Skybed or UA's 2+2 flatbeds or, if I'm honest, EK's staggered seats from the A380. But it definitely can't compete with a good reverse herringbone or an Apex Suite or QF's new business suite.

Originally Posted by Top of climb View Post
Do you remember how NZ was the latest to the party in introducing lie flat seats in J, when they went with the VS herringbone? It's funny how 15 years later they are again latest to the party in sticking with a layout that pretty much every other airline has abandoned.
Let's not rewrite history. Far from being the latest to the party, when NZ introduced the seat in 2004 they were actually one of the very first to have flat beds, and only the second airline (after VS) to have a 1-2-1 layout / direct aisle access. It took QF a full ten years longer, for example. On the other hand, NZ did keep those awful 763 recliners around for *far* too long...
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Old Apr 9, 19, 1:21 pm
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And lets not forget that SQ (who still win awards) still fly aircraft with a dated 2002 J that's not even fully lie flat, and still fly plenty of aircraft with the same 2006 J config as OXI/OXJ that so many people love to trash.

I was astounded on my flight back from ORD as to the number of Americans who were in love with the NZ seat, especially the fact they could dine together.
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Old Apr 9, 19, 2:26 pm
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There are pros and cons to both.
The reverse herringbone has issues with people behind you and walking through your peripheral vision which I find more distracting and harder to relax with, than with people walking in front of me. Hence why at the office I have a desk in the corner with my back to the wall so their aren't people in my peripheral vision and behind me. Everyone is different, even full suites with walls and doors to the roof would be bad for people with claustrophobia, so a seat can't please everyone.
The majority of the AirNZ LH flights are overnight so he bed is what matters and in most cases the AirNZ bed is good. Don't want AirNZ to do anything which affects the sleep comfort.
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Old Apr 9, 19, 2:40 pm
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Originally Posted by mad_atta View Post

Let's not rewrite history. Far from being the latest to the party, when NZ introduced the seat in 2004 they were actually one of the very first to have flat beds, and only the second airline (after VS) to have a 1-2-1 layout / direct aisle access. It took QF a full ten years longer, for example. On the other hand, NZ did keep those awful 763 recliners around for *far* too long...
Yes - you're right. I think I had that perception because NZ was one of the last airlines to get rid of their manual recliners, and I mixed that up with them being one of the last to go full flat. Of course, what really happened was that many of the other airlines (CX, QF etc) were flying angled lie-flat at that time, which NZ had the advantage of skipping by being slow to get rid of the manual recliners.
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Old Apr 9, 19, 2:47 pm
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Originally Posted by nzkarit View Post
There are pros and cons to both.
The reverse herringbone has issues with people behind you and walking through your peripheral vision which I find more distracting and harder to relax with, than with people walking in front of me. Hence why at the office I have a desk in the corner with my back to the wall so their aren't people in my peripheral vision and behind me. Everyone is different, even full suites with walls and doors to the roof would be bad for people with claustrophobia, so a seat can't please everyone.
You're absolutely right. I've never understood why people have an issue with flip-over beds. Completely flat chairs aren't comfortable - for a chair to be comfortable it needs to have contouring on the sides and in the lumbar, but for a bed to be comfortable it needs to be flat. The most elegant solution to get the best of both worlds is a flip over bed. On a 12 hour flight, I'm more than happy to give up 2 minutes of my time to make the bed.
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Old Apr 9, 19, 3:06 pm
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I was told that back when Qantas was introducing the Skybed Mk1, at the same time as it was seeking to create a mega monopoly in Australasia own a strategic shareholding in Air NZ, it was pushing for NZ to go for the same business seat (back when NZ had recliners in business, had first class in the 747 nose, and economy didn't have individual IFE screens). Air NZ refused, it was working on going fully lie flat, and also wanted to experiment with premium economy - which at the time was thought of as partly a way of absorbing Airpoints upgrades from economy at lower cost, and creating a market segment it thought might exist when BP usurped first and business.
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Old Apr 10, 19, 4:32 am
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I can't believe no-one has criticised the inability one would have to see out the window based on the images in the article of the new VS product... Sure you have to turn sideways on NZ but at least you don't have a shelf there....
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