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United Polaris - New Business Class seats & inflight service {Archive}

United Polaris - New Business Class seats & inflight service {Archive}

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Archive thread -- Active thread is United Polaris - New Business Class seats & inflight service -- 3+ years after Intro

United website - Explore: http://view.ceros.com/united/polaris-business-class/p/1
from UA's Facebook stream
Only customers traveling in United Polaris business class or United Polaris Global First on international flights and customers in Star Alliance international first or business class cabins on flights longer than six hours will have access to the United Polaris Lounge.
Official Polaris Lounge Access Rules are here: Polaris Lounge Access Rules

United Polaris Business and Polaris First pax may access the Polaris lounge at connecting airports and their final destination within 24 hours of departure or arrival.

*A international J and F pax may only access the Polaris lounge at the departure airport. For purposes of Polaris lounge access, Canada, the Caribbean, Central America, and Guam are excluded from the definition of "international."

Seat Chart.

Press release: http://www.prnewswire.com/news-relea...300278706.html

NEW YORK, June 2, 2016 /PRNewswire/ -- With the aspiration of making weary business travel a relic of the past, United Airlines today unveiled its all-new United Polaris business class, the airline's most significant product transformation in more than a decade, featuring a reimagined, sleep-enhancing, departure-to-landing experience for intercontinental travelers.

Named after the North Star, United Polaris is the shining new star of business class travel that flyers can turn to for a tranquil and restful journey.

"United Polaris will change the game in international business travel with an exceptional level of relaxation and comfort throughout our customers' journeys," said Oscar Munoz, president and CEO of United. "This completely reconceived experience exemplifies the new spirit of United and the innovation, excitement and operational momentum across our airline."

Path-Breaking Design

In setting out to create a transformative business class experience, United chose to outfit its widebody fleet with a custom-designed, exclusive-to-United seat, rather than select an option already in the marketplace. Designed in partnership with Acumen Design Associates and PriestmanGoode and manufactured by Zodiac Seats United Kingdom, each United Polaris seat will offer direct access to the aisle, 180-degree flat-bed recline and up to 6 foot 6 inches of bed space.

Crafted as individual, forward-facing, suite-like pods, each customer's personal suite will feature a "Do Not Disturb" sign, mood lighting, one-touch lumbar support, several storage areas, multiple surfaces for simultaneous working and dining, a 16-inch high-definition entertainment screen and, for seats in the center of the cabin, electronic privacy dividers. Complementing the new seats, United and PriestmanGoode have also conceived an all-new look for the United Polaris cabins.

In rethinking the international business class experience, United conducted more than 12,000 hours of research, and sleep emerged as the single most important priority for international business class travelers. United Polaris' path-breaking design and sleep-enhancing focus was inspired and informed by insights from hundreds of customers and employees, inflight product simulations and more than 100 product evaluations.

Sleep-Enticing Amenities

In addition to the sleep-enticing United Polaris personal suites, several other amenities were designed with our customers' sleep in mind.

In a first-of-its-kind partnership, United has worked with leading luxury specialty store Saks Fifth Avenue for custom-designed bedding. All designed to provide the best sleep in the sky, the new bedding collection will feature plush duvets, lightweight day-blankets and a large and small pillow for each United Polaris customer. In addition, mattress cushions will be available upon request.

Slippers will be available on all flights, and customized United Polaris pajamas will be available by request on flights longer than 12 hours**. Flyers will also be able to request a gel-cooled pillow. New amenity kits will feature ergonomically designed eye shades, calming lavender pillow mist and additional products from Soho House & Co.'s Cowshed Spa.

With the introduction of United Polaris, the airline intends to donate tens of thousands of pillows, blankets and other inflight service items to Fisher House Foundation, which United and its employees have long supported.

Elevated Dining Experience

Upon boarding their flight, each United Polaris customer will be welcomed with a pre-departure beverage of his or her choice and gourmet chocolate. While in the air, customers will enjoy regionally influenced in-flight menus updated seasonally, developed in partnership with The Trotter Project and its critically recognized chefs, including Bill Kim of acclaimed Chicago restaurants Urbanbelly, bellyQ and Belly Shack.

The airline will offer an upgraded wine experience, with the highest-quality options curated exclusively by United's Master Sommelier. Inflight service will also include made-to-order signature ice cream sundaes, a dessert cart with a variety of petit dessert options, chocolate truffles and wine flights. On daytime flights longer than eight hours and on all flights longer than 12 hours, hot mid-flight snacks such as lobster macaroni and cheese will be available.

Raising The Bar With United Polaris Business Class Lounges

United will also open an exclusive portfolio of United Polaris business class lounges in nine locations around the world the only lounge of its kind offered by a U.S. airline to business class customers that will feature custom-designed chairs, private daybeds, spa-like showers and chef-inspired hot meals served in a boutique restaurant setting so customers can refresh and dine before boarding their planes. Premium sparkling wines and spirits, refreshing snacks and bottled water will also be offered.

The first new United Polaris lounge will open at Chicago O'Hare International Airport on Dec. 1, 2016. Lounges in eight other locations Los Angeles, San Francisco, Houston, New York/Newark, Washington Dulles, Tokyo Narita, Hong Kong and London Heathrow will follow in 2017.

United Polaris Introduction

United will begin to introduce United Polaris on Dec. 1, 2016, with the new inflight food and beverage experience, new custom bedding from Saks Fifth Avenue, new amenity kits and the new United Polaris lounge in Chicago. The United Polaris business class seat will first take flight in December on Boeing 777-300ER aircraft and subsequently on Boeing 787-10 and Airbus A350-1000 aircraft, as well as on Boeing 767-300 and 777-200 retrofits.

United Polaris will serve business class customers flying the U.S. airline industry's most global route network, reaching more than 330 destinations in more than 50 countries.

More information on the United Polaris business class can be found at united.com/Polaris.

[From [email][email protected] 11/15/2016]
Starting December 1, 2016, United Polaris Business Class service will replace United BusinessFirst service on international flights, and United Polaris Global First service will replace the current United Global First service.

Between 2017 to 2019 eight additional United Polaris lounges will open at EWR, HKG, IAD, IAH, LAX, LHR, NRT and SFO. We do not have the exact opening dates at this time. A scheduling announcement will be forthcoming.
** Flights with pajama service (for both directions)
SFO - ICN, PEK, PVG, HGH, XIV, TPE, AKL, HKG, CTU, SYD, TLV, SIN
EWR - NRT, PEK, DEL, BOM, HKG, PVG
ORD - NRT, PEK PVG, HKG
LAX - PVG, SYD, MEL, SIN
IAD - NRT, PEK
IAH - NRT, SYD
(from United Twitter feed https://pbs.twimg.com/media/CyjFHZLW...jpg&name=large

{Similar Threads:
Polaris Lounge Roadmap 2017-2018 (wiki) (thread)
Polaris lounge ORD - opened 01 Dec 2016 (wiki) (thread)
SFO Lounge changes? Which will become Polaris? Shower options?(wiki) (thread)
United Polaris-New Business Class seats & inflight service and new Polaris Lounges(wiki) (thread)}


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Old Jun 10, 16, 5:17 pm
  #751  
 
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Originally Posted by SwisherTown View Post
Munoz became CEO when Smisek left in September of last year.
Munoz had heart replacement surgery in October.

All this stuff was already in the pipe.

Not saying Munoz isn't more customer oriented/savvy than Smisek but we would have had the smiling Jeff every loves making the announcement if it weren't for that little thing with the Port Authority of New York and New Jersey.
Exactly. Most of this had to be already planned by the old regime. Maybe there's some added enhancements under Oscar's watch, but I doubt it's much more than soft product items.

Originally Posted by Kacee View Post
Yeah it's hard to see the prior regime signing on for PJs, more money for food, or the fancy bedding.
This is the direction the airline was going before the regime change, so it's hard to say if the added touches can be credited to the new or old. I can see either doing it.

Originally Posted by kevanyalowitz View Post
Agree but the highest cost associated with this - the seat - was undoubtedly locked by the time Oscar came in. It shows - by far the most dense all-aisle access J product out there. It has Jeff & his former CFO written all over it.
People are confusing "density" with "efficiency". The Polaris product is highly space-efficient. There's a lot of wasted space in other designs, and this serves no one--neither the customer nor airline. This has the high potential of being win-win for the customer and airline. Efficiency is what we should be hopeful for.
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Old Jun 10, 16, 5:22 pm
  #752  
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Originally Posted by minnyfly View Post
People are confusing "density" with "efficiency". The Polaris product is highly space-efficient. There's a lot of wasted space in other designs, and this serves no one--neither the customer nor airline. This has the high potential of being win-win for the customer and airline. Efficiency is what we should be hopeful for.
I know exactly what I mean when I reference "density" in the context of airline seating.

Personal space is the ultimate luxury on an aircraft. Increased density = decreased personal space. There is simply no avoiding that equation.

The Polaris may turn out to be a wonderful seat. But it is a very dense configuration and will therefore be less desirable to those who can afford the more spacious - and more luxurious - J and F cabins on other carriers.
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Old Jun 10, 16, 5:27 pm
  #753  
 
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Originally Posted by Kacee View Post
Personal space is the ultimate luxury on an aircraft. Increased density = decreased personal space. There is simply no avoiding that equation.
That equation is simply not true, particularly in business cabins. Personal space is significantly independent of density. That's why some airlines have moved past herringbone configurations. There's more efficiency to be found.
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Old Jun 10, 16, 5:35 pm
  #754  
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Originally Posted by minnyfly View Post
That equation is simply not true, particularly in business cabins. Personal space is significantly independent of density. That's why some airlines have moved past herringbone configurations. There's more efficiency to be found.
Sorry, that makes no sense at all.

More people in the same space may be more efficient but it is also higher density. That's just basic physics.

I've flown virtually all the major configurations in J, and it is precisely what you describe as the "inefficiency" of reverse herringbone which makes it more appealing than virtually any other J configuration. From the passenger's perspective less seats in the same space = better. That's the main reason that UA GF is "better" than UA BF.
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Old Jun 10, 16, 6:14 pm
  #755  
 
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Originally Posted by Kacee View Post
Sorry, that makes no sense at all.

More people in the same space may be more efficient but it is also higher density. That's just basic physics.

I've flown virtually all the major configurations in J, and it is precisely what you describe as the "inefficiency" of reverse herringbone which makes it more appealing than virtually any other J configuration. From the passenger's perspective less seats in the same space = better. That's the main reason that UA GF is "better" than UA BF.
You're substituting "density" for "efficiency". UA's proposed configuration is more "dense", but it's also more "efficient". Efficiency is what matters to the customer and is the positive term. "Density" on it's own isn't helpful and is a negative term. A more efficient design leads to as much or more personal space while allowing as many or more people in the same floor space. In that case "high density" is also an upgrade for the customer.

I dislike either herringbone style, but that dislike is independent from it being fairly inefficient in space and incompatible with narrower fuselages. That inefficiency and incongruity does nothing for me, the customer, and nothing for the airline. If anything, it's costly for both, in the measure of less supply and higher prices.
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Old Jun 10, 16, 6:19 pm
  #756  
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Originally Posted by Kacee View Post
Sorry, that makes no sense at all.

More people in the same space may be more efficient but it is also higher density. That's just basic physics.

I've flown virtually all the major configurations in J, and it is precisely what you describe as the "inefficiency" of reverse herringbone which makes it more appealing than virtually any other J configuration. From the passenger's perspective less seats in the same space = better. That's the main reason that UA GF is "better" than UA BF.
That "inefficiency" also leads to a longer and wider seat - which in the end is what I care about most - I could give a you know what about a side table or storage area for my amenity kit - give me width and length - which is what scares me most about the new UA configuration - I hope I'm wrong but still scared I'm right....
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Old Jun 10, 16, 6:26 pm
  #757  
 
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Originally Posted by minnyfly View Post
That equation is simply not true, particularly in business cabins. Personal space is significantly independent of density. That's why some airlines have moved past herringbone configurations. There's more efficiency to be found.
That efficiency always comes at the expense of something.

From the looks of it, Polaris sacrificed workspace, footwells, armrests, perhaps even structural stability for density.
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Old Jun 10, 16, 6:29 pm
  #758  
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Originally Posted by minnyfly View Post
Efficiency is what matters to the customer and is the positive term.
Nonsense.

Passengers care about space and comfort. When airlines start talking about enhancing "efficiency," passenger discomfort pretty much inevitably results.
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Old Jun 10, 16, 6:56 pm
  #759  
 
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Originally Posted by UASleeper View Post
Interesting points. I find it hard to believe that after "12,000 hours of research" and -granted only limited- secret customer feedback UA needs additional customer feedback once Polaris is rolled out on the first three 773 before it finalizes plans and decides to continue with the roll out the new seat. Especially if they haven't figured out yet how to fit The seats into the 787-8/9 ( but then again they seem to have solved that problem with the 787-10). I haven't the conversion plan in this light until now. If tit's rue, it would mean a hastily prepared and maybe not so thought through rush into the seat conversion despite three years of planning. Or at least utter insecurity about how the Polaris product will be received by its customers. If that's the case, the mostly positive feedback on what's available on paper should give UA it's much needed self esteem.

Do you have a link to the sketches for the 787 LOPA?
from what I've read ALL the international aircraft will be reconfigured... but the first aircraft to receive the new seats are the new 777-300 and A350-1000s... but the 777-200s and the remaining 767-300/400s will also get them...
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Old Jun 10, 16, 8:23 pm
  #760  
 
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Originally Posted by UASleeper View Post
While I am agreeing with you in general, I think UA is trying to refit those planes first that have the worst seats, i.e. the pmUA backwards facing narrower 2-4-2 "business" class seats. The new 787-8/9 all have the diamond seats. Also, it seems as if UA is still trying to figure out how to fit Polaris into the 787-8/9. Although they seem to have figured it out for the 787-10. That is still the one part that confuses me as the width of the fuselage of any 787 should be the same or am I wrong?
In terms of comfort I much prefer the UA 2-4-2 seats over anything on the 787 in business. The seats are not comfortable on the 787s and should take priority. On the 777s I have a choice of GF which is much better than the new product and what is offered on two class 787s and 777s. I would much prefer to see the 787s get the new product first.
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Old Jun 10, 16, 8:51 pm
  #761  
 
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Originally Posted by LDVFlyer View Post
That efficiency always comes at the expense of something.

From the looks of it, Polaris sacrificed workspace, footwells, armrests, perhaps even structural stability for density.
If something has to be significantly given up, that means it's not very efficient. It doesn't appear like Polaris "gives up" much, if anything, in any of those areas. Equivalent products flying today have been reviewed favorably.

For example, herringbone automatically (before customer customization) gives up window seats, couple's seats, seat count, fleet-wide consistency, and, in the case of the older designs, gate-to-gate AVOD. That's a long list. What do we know that Polaris gives up? The only big one to me is that not all seats are created equal. Small list.

Originally Posted by Kacee View Post
Passengers care about space and comfort. When airlines start talking about enhancing "efficiency," passenger discomfort pretty much inevitably results.
Sadly, that's often the case. But it isn't always. This time it isn't. How UA customized these seats will determine the good and bad, because on paper it's excellent.
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Old Jun 10, 16, 8:52 pm
  #762  
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Originally Posted by minnyfly View Post
In that case "high density" is also an upgrade for the customer.
How can high density ever be good for the customer? Simple math says the more seats you cram into a fixed area, the less space per seat is the inevitable result. Unless, of course, you've found a way to defy the laws of physics.
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Old Jun 10, 16, 9:10 pm
  #763  
 
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Originally Posted by halls120 View Post
How can high density ever be good for the customer? Simple math says the more seats you cram into a fixed area, the less space per seat is the inevitable result. Unless, of course, you've found a way to defy the laws of physics.
Without wading into whether or not I think this is the case, it is possible. I believe the argument is along the lines of wasted space. If a passenger in the current configuration has X amount of space in their "pod" but the configuration of the overall seating layout has significant dead space between pods, it is possible to be more efficient with the layout of the pods so as to add more seats while still maintaining X amount of personal space per pod.

This would be the argument for a more efficient layout with higher density while maintaining personal space.

While it is higher density (more people in a same-sized cabin) it could be successfully argued that both sides win - passengers get the same amount of personal space in their pod and the airline gets more passengers in the cabin.

Whether this is the case or not with Polaris is another question entirely.
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Old Jun 10, 16, 9:15 pm
  #764  
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Higher density means more Polaris seats than the previous layout?

So maybe better award availability?
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Old Jun 10, 16, 9:26 pm
  #765  
 
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Is Polaris a United product or a partnership company?
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