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Hector Isaev
Hector Isaev

(Dub) 11 : Premium Seat (No Extra Charge)

The 787-10 offers the largest premium economy cabin in the KLM fleet. The smaller -9 Dreamliner will have just 21 recliners, whereas both the -200 and -300 variants of the 777 will feature a 24-seat cabin.

(Dub) 11 : Premium Seat (No Extra Charge)

KLM picked a customized version of the Rockwell Collins MiQ seat for its premium economy recliner. (This is the same product that United installed in Premium Plus and American offers in domestic first class and in premium economy.)

American Airlines has invested heavily in its premium-cabin products over the past few years, from eliminating angle-flat seats in business class to installing premium economy on 124 aircraft in its international fleet.

With all these changes, not all American Airlines premium-cabin experiences are created equally. There are 13 different versions of premium seats found on AA's current fleet of 938 aircraft. Let's break down which ones are the best and which you'll want to avoid.

In October 2016, American Airlines' first true premium-economy seats took to the skies aboard its Boeing 787-9 aircraft. Since then, AA has retrofit more than 100 widebody aircraft with this new cabin, which required ripping out some business-class seats. The resulting seats don't have the most padding, but they're a notable improvement from economy. The seats have a solid 38 inches of pitch, allowing a generous recline. The well-designed seats have a built-in storage well with universal power outlet, and the seatbacks have a large, crisp inflight entertainment screen. And if you get a seat at the bulkhead, there's a leg rest that extends from below your seat.

Where to find it: You'll find premium-economy seating on all American Airlines Airbus A330-200 (15), Boeing 777-200 (47), 777-300ER (20), 787-8 (20) and 787-9 (22) aircraft. While mostly found on international routes, these aircraft are also found on select domestic routes. On most of these routes, the premium-economy section isn't being sold as a separate cabin but as part of AA's extra-legroom Main Cabin Extra product.

Those same seats that you'll find labeled as American Airlines premium economy are also found flying as domestic first class on AA's Boeing 737 MAX, Airbus A321neo and Project Oasis 737 and A321 aircraft. Although labeled as first class, these seats are a step down from the premium-economy product as they have less legroom and there's no built-in inflight entertainment screen. Even on long routes, AA isn't providing IFE tablets on these aircraft. If you don't have your own device or bring printed materials, you don't get any entertainment. That's not very first class.

Last, and certainly least among the American Airlines premium seats, is first class on former US Airways aircraft. These planes have been integrated into American Airlines' fleet in name only. I wrote in April 2017 about the relative misery of flying on these aircraft. And while AA has invested considerable amounts in its lounges, Wi-Fi and premium economy, these aircraft have only gotten new seat covers and carpet.

American Airlines' premium-cabin seats range from excellent to pretty miserable as far as first class goes, with plenty of steps in between. If you're looking for a top-notch seat, you'll want to stick to business and first class on American Airlines Boeing 777 and 787 aircraft. The A330s are aging but still offer a solid business-class product.

The legacy American Airlines first-class seat is the best of the recliner seats, followed by American Airlines' true premium economy seats. Near the bottom, you'll find the new Project Oasis retrofits, the Boeing 737 MAX and Airbus A321neo. At the very bottom are the old US Airways first-class seats, which are the only ones that will benefit from an Oasis retrofit.

From what I can see on their website, there's no such thing as Premium Economy. There's a variety of seat options in economy but no separate 'class' or cabin with enhanced service or facilities. Depends how tall you are on whether you want to pay $104.99 each for extra legroom for seven hours. All the other options are simply seats towards the front of the cabin.

There's no premium economy, per se, but you can pay more for extra leg-room seating or a seat closer to the front of the cabin in economy. But it all comes under the economy label; there's no difference in service. Transatlantic economy includes a seat, blanket, pillow, earphones, lunch or dinner, breakfast or snack, non-alcoholic drinks and in-flight entertainment. Alcoholic beverages must be purchased on-board.

The seating and ambiance are exceptional. There is a great diversity of ways to experience the space. It can be both a very private lounge, or a great place to share a meal or a drink with some travel companions. You can get some work done on its blazing internet in solitude, shower and recharge after a long flight, or nap in the loungers overlooking the tarmac.

The seatback screens pulled out a little bit to improve viewing angles, which was handy especially when the seat in front of me reclined. Each screen is equipped with a USB charger and a headphone jack as well.

With Private Suites in First Class, flat-bed seats in Business Class, and extra room throughout all of our cabins, you can enjoy total comfort on your flight. Switch off and unwind with thousands of channels on the largest screens in the air, delicious meals, and complimentary beverages.

How reasonable are buy-up prices to premium plus and biz investment flights where there is significant empty room? Is booking an economy ticket on a flight that frequently sees lots of empty biz seats and hoping for a cheap buy-up offer a reasonable tactic on United?

When operating domestic and short-haul international routes, American often sells premium economy seats as part of the main cabin instead of as a true premium economy product. Just look for a small cabin of seats with fewer seats per row.

American Airlines premium economy seats are virtually identical between aircraft. The only difference is the number of seats per row due to some aircraft being narrower than others. American Airlines Boeing 777 aircraft are arranged with eight seats per row (2-4-2) while Boeing 787 aircraft have just seven seats per row (2-3-2).

The seat configuration of the Boeing 777 AA is 2 x 4 x 2. Premium Economy is a small area of just four rows which felt nice. The whole AA premium economy cabin looked and felt very new.

Looking at economy vs premium economy, American Airlines Premium Economy is definitely worth it at about double the price of an economy seat over the 15 odd hours in the air of a London-New York return flight.

Around the turn of the millennium, British Airways became the first airline to introduce lie-flat seats in business class. This created a drastic difference between economy and business class, leading to the birth of a new class of service at British Airways: premium economy. British Airways dubbed the new cabin World Traveller Plus.

These many years later, British Airways is still a leader in premium economy. A revamp of the product in 2019 introduced a new premium economy seat with 50% larger in-flight entertainment screens, new amenity kits, pillows and blankets.

As British Airways is part of the Oneworld alliance, travelers can also book British Airways premium economy using miles from several partner airlines. However, each partner airline charges a different award rate for British Airways flights.

American Airlines baggage policy allows business class passengers to get at least two free checked bags. Even better, you can stuff up to 70 pounds (that's 32 kg) of stuff into each bag at no extra charge.

2. Airlines want to limit high current loads much as possible. I have observed people plugging in their multiplug adapters to the conventional seatback power plugs and charge their laptop, ipad, phone, camera batteries, powerbanks and what not. If everyone did this, there would be a significant load on the power supply units on the aircraft and much greater amperage capacity needed to each seatback along with ways to dissipate the greater heat. Hot and heavier cabling are undesirable on aircraft.

Technically, SAS Plus IS premium economy. It isn't advertised or sold as business class as they have a separate SAS Business for their long haul fleet and removed business class on their short haul and medium haul flights a long time ago. Also, if you book SAS Plus and the flight is operated by, say Lufthansa, you'd be seated in economy. As a premium economy product it's perfectly fine, nothing fancy or extraordinary, but not too bad either.

@Ben - just a small correction to the sentence where no was typed instead of "now"."now" queueing for the buffetOn a different note, the choice to limit power provisions to a USB is deliberate for two reasons:1. Most personal devices are now coming with USB charging cables where the adapter is replaceable. This is compact.2. Airlines want to limit high current loads much as possible. I have observed people plugging in their multiplug adapters to the conventional seatback power plugs and charge their laptop, ipad, phone, camera batteries, powerbanks and what not. If everyone did this, there would be a significant load on the power supply units on the aircraft and much greater amperage capacity needed to each seatback along with ways to dissipate the greater heat. Hot and heavier cabling are undesirable on aircraft.In business and first, airlines can get away with higher amperage plug points since these cabins serve a smaller number of passengers.

Club Suites are located on the main (mid-level) suite concourse above the lower seating bowl. These suites feature a traditional design including a private bar and kitchenette, interior lounge seating, and a private balcony with seats overlooking the floor. Club Suites are meticulously designed and well-appointed with premium furnishings. Club Suites typically come with a base quantity of 16 suite tickets with the option to purchase up to 14 additional tickets (max capacity of 30), as needed. 041b061a72


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