Trip report from the inaugural 748i flight FRA-IAD

Old Jun 1, 12, 1:39 pm
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Trip report from the inaugural 748i flight FRA-IAD

Hey there everyone...I was one of the lucky few on the flight.

Officially seated in Y but I spent a decent amount of time upstairs hanging out with the cool kids, too. She's a beautiful plane and an incredibly smooth ride. I was also quite impressed with the new Y seats, though I certainly wouldn't object to being in C or F instead.

I started writing up my experience on the 747-8i (albeit a bit out of order because I figured folks would want to read about the actual flight more than the pre-party) while on board and I'm putting more up as I can. Here's some of the text I have there.



The new seats offer a surprisingly large amount of room at the knees, thanks to the slimline seat design and relocation of the magazine stowage. There is also no metal bar across the rear of the seats at the bottom where it normally would dig into your shins. Oh, and a pillow and blanket at every seat.

The cushioning of the seats was my biggest concern. Turns out that the concern was mostly unfounded. My previous slimline seat experiences were on short-haul aircraft and those are not particularly generous in the padding department. The new Lufthansa 747-8i coach seats were markedly better. They arenít luxe, by any stretch, but I didnít find sitting in them for several hours to be particularly uncomfortable at all. Yeah, they are still coach seats, but they really arenít that bad.

The seat pitch isnít any greater than the other Lufthansa economy products so I was somewhat concerned about using my laptop (10" netbook) and otherwise take advantage of the space at my seat. With the seats upright I had no troubles at all. I could actually cross my legs and rest my computer on my lap reasonably comfortably.

...


The seats are most definitely a new and different experience and I got to sit and lay down in them.




They are fully flat and 1.97m long when in sleep mode. This is quite a welcome change to the product for most folks. That said, they are also a bit narrower and the pairs of seats (2-2-2 on the main level and 2-2 upstairs) point in towards each other. This means the foot well space is shared by the passengers. It also means that the seats feel a bit narrower throughout. One friend I was chatting with about the seats noted that the narrower layout was a negative for him and that he preferred the older version. I can see where heís coming from but I like the new one much better, at least so far.

The seats are well-padded and the controls to manage the positioning are intuitive. The seats are quite comfortable throughout the range of the recline.

I'll post more as I get it written up and uploaded and will share here as well. Feel free to ask questions. I explored everything except F so I hopefully can answer.
sbm12 is offline  
Old Jun 1, 12, 2:16 pm
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Thanks for the report and all the photos! Good to hear you experienced both Y and C. ^
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Old Jun 1, 12, 2:46 pm
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I was lucky enough to witness the flight landing on runway 19C at IAD. I was standing on taxiway Y3.
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Old Jun 1, 12, 3:18 pm
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Which business class area is better? main level or upper deck?
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Old Jun 1, 12, 4:47 pm
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Nice, thanks for posting! I like your pictures of the economy class food
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Old Jun 1, 12, 10:39 pm
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When will the service between FRA and LAX begin?
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Old Jun 2, 12, 12:59 am
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Originally Posted by sbm12 View Post

Officially seated in Y but I spent a decent amount of time upstairs hanging out with the cool kids, too.
Do you mean flight crew or upper deck C passengers?
Originally Posted by sbm12 View Post

The seats are most definitely a new and different experience and I got to sit and lay down in them.




They are fully flat and 1.97m long when in sleep mode. This is quite a welcome change to the product for most folks. That said, they are also a bit narrower and the pairs of seats (2-2-2 on the main level and 2-2 upstairs) point in towards each other. This means the foot well space is shared by the passengers. It also means that the seats feel a bit narrower throughout. One friend I was chatting with about the seats noted that the narrower layout was a negative for him and that he preferred the older version. I can see where heís coming from but I like the new one much better, at least so far.
Narrower compared to what?

Older 2-2-2 business seats on Airbii?
Older 2-3-2 business seats on B747-400?

Also, "fully flat"? How convenient is climbing over your neighbourīs feet to reach aisle? Like in upper deck (low ceiling and overhead bins underneath)?
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Old Jun 2, 12, 1:17 am
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Thanks for the trip report sbm12!
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Old Jun 2, 12, 4:25 am
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Thanks for the great report, sbm12 ^

According to this inaugural flight report by SPIEGEL ONLINE Mr. Franz acknowledged already that the foot space of the new C seats in V-config is too cramped and that they plan to put the H-config into future 748's (but not as early as on the 6th aircraft), in German only:

http://www.spiegel.de/reise/aktuell/...-a-836417.html

Last edited by ngfan; Jun 2, 12 at 4:46 am
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Old Jun 2, 12, 4:48 am
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They already agree the new C is crap? One day after launch? Wow, the PR machine is working well. I suggest better synergies are put in place.
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Old Jun 2, 12, 4:50 am
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Originally Posted by ngfan View Post
Thanks for the great report, sbm12 ^

According to this inaugural flight report by SPIEGEL ONLINE Mr. Franz acknowledged already that the foot space of the new C seats in V-config is too cramped and that they plan to put the H-config into future 748's (but not as early as on the 6th aircraft), in German only:

http://www.spiegel.de/reise/aktuell/...-a-836417.html
What is an H-configuration?
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Old Jun 2, 12, 5:39 am
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Originally Posted by CalFlyer View Post
What is an H-configuration?
The seats are not angled towards each other. The seats are parallel and angled towards the windows.

You can see a picture here on page 7 (left picture): http://presse.lufthansa.com/fileadmi...Maerz-2012.pdf
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Old Jun 2, 12, 7:30 am
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Originally Posted by Matze20111984 View Post
The seats are not angled towards each other. The seats are parallel and angled towards the windows.

You can see a picture here on page 7 (left picture): http://presse.lufthansa.com/fileadmi...Maerz-2012.pdf
Great, thank you.

Why on earth did LH not install H-layouts in ALL PLANES??? The feedback on the V-seats from the test in 2010 was a disaster (mine as well). They should have swallowed their pride and avoid the stupid V-mistake.
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Old Jun 2, 12, 7:43 am
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Well first of all there's gonna be more feedback. They already surveyed everyone in First and Business class on the seat. I'm sure they are doing the same on the A333 with the H config and figure it out. (well in an ideal world they would do...)

I didn't mind the V config too much. I did not have any issues playing footsie with my neighbor and climbing over him wasn't that difficult either. It does get pretty narrow towards the feet and the footrest (especially for the window seat pairs) can get tight.

To Dr. Franz comments... I can just add that I overheard him (he was standing in the aisle next to me talking to a "guest of honor") saying that this is the "best business class product out there". And he was raving on and on about it, that no competitor is even close to the seat and service.... (don't shoot the messenger, just relaying what he said)
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Old Jun 2, 12, 8:12 am
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Originally Posted by CalFlyer View Post
Great, thank you.

Why on earth did LH not install H-layouts in ALL PLANES??? The feedback on the V-seats from the test in 2010 was a disaster (mine as well). They should have swallowed their pride and avoid the stupid V-mistake.
Good question I think the V-configuration on the center-rows looks great because it is much wider than the window-rows. May be they just wanted to test it in the "real world" Right now they have the H-configuration with their new A333 and the V-configuration on the B747-8I. So let them fly a couple of weeks and evaluate with more feedback.
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