Within the past few years, airlines have begun transforming the entire business class journey—from the service and the cuisines to the seat and its amenities. Airlines such as Qatar, Singapore Airlines, Air France and Finnair are one of the few carriers that have recently taken an extra step in making the travel experience for premium passengers better, incorporating specific features that are not usually found elsewhere.
Let’s take a look at what some of these are:
Last year, Qatar Airways unveiled its redesigned business class seat that features a double bed for those sitting in the middle rows. Although this can be adjusted if traveling together, single travelers can enjoy complete privacy as well, thanks to the adjustable middle panel. Moreover, the airline offers suite walls to provide you with privacy (in addition to the “do not disturb” button) and has updated their entertainment system where you can play your playlist and watch shows you’ve downloaded to your phone, on the in-flight TV screen. The business class journey on Qatar Airways is phenomenal.
(Qatar was the first airline to offer such a luxurious option, then Singapore Airlines followed suit with their most recent redesign.)
You may have already seen or read about Etihad’s First Class apartment, but it’s somewhat outdated and needs a bit of a remodel. This is why we’ve turned to Singapore Airlines newest first class suite, which is larger than Etihad’s apartment, featuring a double bed, two chairs, table, closet, and a personal mirror. Although the airline hasn’t installed a shower for first class passengers, the lavatory is luxuriously spacious (enough to fit several people inside, but of course, only one person can use it at a time).
Since August of last year, travelers flying in business class on Air France can experience virtual reality (VR)—from booking a ticket to watching shows in the seat. Customers can view all the business class amenities before booking their ticket, beginning with the check-in process, unwinding at the airport lounge, and sitting in an Air France business class seat. Onboard, travelers can use the VR system to watch the latest shows and films, immersing themselves into a world outside of the cabin. You may truly feel as though you have your own personal theater without ever having to leave your space.
Even more recent, KLM just introduced a VR experience as well.
Here’s a short video to help you visualize the VR adventure, courtesy of Air France.
Finnair’s newest business class seat has been redesigned using minimalist colors, yet accented with Marimekko designs, including the pillows, blankets, slippers, napkins and even the amenity kits. Aside from the elegant and very soothing touches, the airline has done a phenomenal job of transforming the seat into one that’s surprisingly very comfortable, private and easy to control. Moreover, their service is fantastic and the food features seasonal ingredients used to create cuisines that are supposed to taste excellent at high altitudes. Among many European carriers, Finnair has become one of our favorites since the recent upgrade.