VS - Bad business seats and config

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Old Oct 2, 18, 6:27 pm
  #1  
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VS - Bad business seats and config

I just returned from a RTW trip ticketed by VS, thankfully the only actual VS flights I did where:

HKG-LHR (789) - 7A
MAN-JFK (747) - 9K

Did 6 other flights on BA, VA, Delta.

I say thankfully because although the service and food where good VS's business seating is truly awful.

- No storage
- Very little privacy, you're sitting "next to" the person in the rows front and back of you with only a shoulder height divider and on the 747 or non-An789 rows you're also looking at the person opposite.
- Window behind you(!)
- Fold fwd seat to make bed
- Very little space, for sleeping they're like a coffin, but with your feet exposed.

Who on earth designed these? They're an order of magnitude worse than any long-haul business seat I've experienced before, by contrast Virgin Australia's business seats are a delight and have none of the issues above.

I went with VS because of it being a decent RTW deal and earning points on VA but will never, every fly them again, I'd even give BA a go for trans pacific and I'm no fan of them. I only researched seating after booking assuming VS business would be good, big mistake.

Seriously, whoever designed these seats should be fired, and whoever chose to continue them on newer planes like the 789 too.

Posting this as a warning not to make my mistake.
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Old Oct 2, 18, 6:39 pm
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+100. You beat me on the post as I just returned from SEA-LHR and had exactly the same thoughts. I will fly VS Premium Economy in a heartbeat but no J for me any more.​​​​ For some reaaon it took me several fights to realize how bad the seat / layout really was.
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Last edited by AntonS; Oct 2, 18 at 6:50 pm
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Old Oct 2, 18, 9:59 pm
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Join Date: Nov 2011
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I'm sorry but you should have done your research before not after booking and handing over your cash.

The VS seat isn't perfect but nor is the BA CW seat which also has limited storage and the vast majority of seats have no direct aisle access (100% do on VS) and on BA you are also looking at someone opposite if you are on the aisle plus on VS you are not actually facing someone elses face.
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Old Oct 2, 18, 10:08 pm
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The description sounds like (and pictures seem to confirm) a set up virtually identical to that on air nz 78/77 etc

i donít like it either although it seems iím in the minority
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Old Oct 3, 18, 12:30 am
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By any objective measure, the VS J seat isn't "BAD". Many people, myself included, quite like the seat and the layout. Direct aisle access. An actual bed. "Your feet exposed" is fabulous for everybody on this planet taller than 6 feet who is fed up with scrunching their legs into a tiny cubbyhole.

"I don't like the seat". OK fine. People can have their opinions.
"I prefer a diferent configuration". OK fine. Try to fly on airlines that offer your preferred config.
"Bad seat". Nope...
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Old Oct 3, 18, 2:09 am
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Ah the ol' "whoever did X should be fired"... the seat design has been around for a long time - but I agree it is past it's prime. At the time it was an innovative way of offering all-aisle access.

I am in agreement with Craig. It is not a bad seat - there are far worse alternatives for VS' primary market (TATL UK<->US), I'm thinking United for a start. But then I'll concede as well that there are probably better alternatives out there. I'm a fan of Delta One, and I'd rate the seat over Virgin Upper Class. But for me personally I find the combination of the ground service, lounge, on-board service, bar and seat to be a superior package to the competition.

For what it is worth, a new seat design is in the works for the A350s, but everything is frustratingly hush-hush.

Sorry to hear you didn't like the seat though. But it was a bit silly to put down your miles/money without looking up what you're buying.
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Old Oct 3, 18, 3:44 am
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Originally Posted by nancypants View Post
The description sounds like (and pictures seem to confirm) a set up virtually identical to that on air nz 78/77 etc
Correct, Air NZ is the only other carrier using the same seat design, albeit in white.

Frankly, I like the current seat. We all know its due an upgrade, but it is comfortable and works well as a bed. Both points BA does fairly bad at.

Bottom line is, if seating is a big deal to you, then research is key.
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Old Oct 3, 18, 4:44 am
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You'll be a long time trying to find a BA flight that goes across the Pacific...!
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Old Oct 3, 18, 7:48 am
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Originally Posted by CommanderB View Post
Correct, Air NZ is the only other carrier using the same seat design, albeit in white.

Frankly, I like the current seat. We all know its due an upgrade, but it is comfortable and works well as a bed. Both points BA does fairly bad at.

Bottom line is, if seating is a big deal to you, then research is key.
See this is really why you can't please all. I'm taking my first VS UC flight towards the end of the month to see for myself. But I would say the BA seat is very comfortable and an excellent bed, and those are not aspects I'd complain about. My gripes with BA seats are the lack of local storage, obviously not window upstairs on a 747, and how different the good and bad seats are.
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Old Oct 7, 18, 10:40 am
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At least you didnít get the old A330 config, that was poor
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Old Oct 7, 18, 12:15 pm
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Originally Posted by dougzz View Post
See this is really why you can't please all. I'm taking my first VS UC flight towards the end of the month to see for myself. But I would say the BA seat is very comfortable and an excellent bed, and those are not aspects I'd complain about. My gripes with BA seats are the lack of local storage, obviously not window upstairs on a 747, and how different the good and bad seats are.
BA puts 8 across on the 777 and lower deck of 747 in J.... Although it's staggered, I don't see how it's better.
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Old Oct 7, 18, 4:13 pm
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Originally Posted by MarkP24 View Post
BA puts 8 across on the 777 and lower deck of 747 in J.... Although it's staggered, I don't see how it's better.
I donít see how my post you quoted has any relevance to what you say? I find the seat comfortable and a good bed, what has that to do with the number of seats across on two aircraft types?

Also as you say the seats are staggered so 8 across is not really representative, more 2x4 across. Are the BA CW seats packed in, absolutely, no disputing that.
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Old Oct 20, 18, 9:16 pm
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The VS seat was fantastic when it was launched, but yes the design is showing its age - Virgin know this and the new seat coming on the A350 should improve the situation.

Originally Posted by UKtravelbear View Post
The VS seat isn't perfect but nor is the BA CW seat which also has limited storage and the vast majority of seats have no direct aisle access (100% do on VS) and on BA you are also looking at someone opposite if you are on the aisle plus on VS you are not actually facing someone elses face.
I would say that 'the vast majority' is a little exaggerated, less than 50% of CW seats have no direct aisle access.
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Old Oct 21, 18, 4:02 am
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Direct aisle access is what solo travellers want. Sitting next to your partner is what couples want. It's rather difficult to find a configuration that suits both, without being inefficient in terms of space utlilisation... (or reducing the amount of legroom per passenger)

Personally I think people should try several airlines and then try to stick with the airline offering the configuration that most suits you personally. (rather than moan about Airline X not offering your preference)
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Old Oct 26, 18, 6:22 pm
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Yesterday flew LHR-MIA on an A330. First Virgin UC flight, mostly a BA/AA flyer, and wanted to try Virgin. Glad I did, the clubhouse, crew, and food I thought better than BA, but the seat I found to be inferior for me. On BA I can usually get a bulkhead seat so have window and and direct aisle access, the BA seat itself I really like, I just wish there was somewhere to put kindle/glasses. This is not a problem upstairs on the 747, but otherwise the usual lack of of immediate storage annoying, but replicated on Virgin, and with that odd fold forward bed feature, along with a seat I generally found less comfortable, it seemed to jut into the base of my back, and no amount of fiddling with adjustment fixed that. Glad I did it, and I'd still do occasional VS flight, but I'll remain BA/AA for now, especially given BAEC working really well for me.

Last edited by dougzz; Oct 27, 18 at 6:59 am
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