DALLAS – Air New Zealand (NZ) has upped its game in the market by unveiling first-of-its-kind Skynest sleep pods in Economy class and a new Business Premier Luxe seat set to offer more space and privacy.
This is a result of the overwhelming response received from customers over the years on the importance of sleep on long-haul flights.
The carrier’s new Boeing 787 Dreamliners, set to arrive in 2024, would be fitted with the new market-leading product to provide customers with unrivaled luxury and comfort.
Passengers will be able to book 4-hour sessions for the sleep pods “Skynest” in economy class for an additional cost. Pods will be equipped with USB charging and privacy curtains, complimented by pillows, blankets, and mattresses to add to the comfort of passengers. A total of six sleep pods would be installed towards the back of the economy cabin.
Greg Foran, Chief Executive Officer of NZ, said, “New Zealand’s location puts us in a unique position to lead in the ultra-long-haul travel experience. We have zeroed in on sleep, comfort, and wellness because we know how important it is for our customers to arrive well-rested. Whether they are heading straight into a meeting, or to their first-holiday hotspot – they want to hit the ground running.”
He further went on to add, “It’s a proud moment to finally unveil five years of hard Mahi, in what truly is a cabin of possibility. One that will provide customers with options to get some shut-eye wherever they’re sitting. We wanted to offer our Economy customers a lie-flat option and that’s how Skynest was born. It’s going to be a real game-changer for the economy travel experience”
The new product for Economy class will be one-of-a-kind as it will provide the option of getting a sound 4-hour sleep in the comfort of a lie-flat bed. The Skynest concept was first announced by Air New Zealand in 2020 following which NZ carried out extensive research at its innovation center.
A Forest-inspired Design
Leanne Geraghty, Chief Customer and Sales Officer, said the design was derived from the uniqueness of Aotearoa, from the forest-inspired carpets to the seats that draw inspiration from the native New Zealand bird, the Tui.
Leanne Geraghty said, “Whether we are welcoming visitors or flying New Zealanders home, we want our customers to experience Aotearoa from the moment they step on board – and get the best night’s rest.
She further quoted: “Research shows us the first night away from home is the hardest to get a good night’s sleep so everything we do on board is to help create a sense of calm – from the lighting and sleep ritual including sleepy teas and balms to the healthier food choices and breathable fabrics. Meditative onscreen content, and entertainment, will also help customers unwind and get ready for rest”
“Our new cabin experience is set to be world-class, and we know our customers will love it”, she wrapped up.
Further to the introduction of Skynest, a new business class product was also announced, Business Premier Luxe, which boasts a fully closing door with much-enhanced privacy and comfort, and space for two to dine.
The new products will be inducted into the long-haul routes of NZ in 2024, the booking cost for which will be published closer to the launch.
In the post-COVID era of travel recovery, it remains to be seen how successful the new product is, and if it helps revolutionize economy air travel.
Featured image: Air New Zealand ZK-NZN Boeing 787-9 Dreamliner. Photo: Daniel Gorun/Airways