Aer Lingus has announced details of its new Business Class that will be launched on transatlantic flights from March 2015. The service aims to provide a unique differentiator for Aer Lingus and ensure that customers experience the best of smart travel with high levels of comfort and sophistication.
Benefits of New Service
The Business Class service will provide a unique space based on a customer’s needs, depending on whether they wish to sleep, work, dine or simply relax. This will be facilitated by the new custom-designed Vantage seat that converts into a full lie-flat bed. Due to the popularity of the Business Class service in recent years, the number of Business Class seats on the long-haul fleet will increase.
Portadown-based Thompson Aero has created the new Vantage Seat, the central element of the new Business Class service. The bespoke full lie-flat seat delivers the possibility of a blissful sleep that will allow customers arrive at their destination 100% rested and ready to get on with their day.
The new seat transforms in to a fully flat 6’6’’ (2 metres) bed, which is one of the longest in the industry with a seat width of 22’’. The Business Class cabin has been designed so that 90% of the seats have direct aisle access, giving greater privacy and the ability to get in and out of seats with ease.
Irish supplier Botany Weaving, based in Cork Street in Dublin, has provided the fabrics for the Business Class cabin, including seat covers, carpets and curtains – all designed in vibrant fibres to reflect the Irish weaving heritage.
Aer Lingus has redefined how to work when crossing the Atlantic – allowing customers to stay connected in-flight, with Panasonic, Deutsche Telekom and Aeromobile, offering complimentary wi-fi that can be accessed through personal devices, and a mobile network that allows customers to send and receive texts and data.
The newly refurbished cabin has built-in power points with universal sockets and USB power outlets, alongside ample work space. Stowage has been increased to allow for mini tablets to be stored under the personal monitor and laptops can be stored in specially designed stowage space. Special pockets for phones have been created and work lights with a dimming feature are standard on all seats.
Aer Lingus’s commitment to Irish suppliers is evident across the newly designed Business Class menu created in consultation with Aer Lingus Executive Chef James Keaveney and Irish food consultant Hugo Arnold. The new menu will feature signature dishes from the best Irish restaurants across the four provinces of Ireland. Seasonally driven, the menu will be changed four times yearly using the finest Irish ingredients to guarantee freshness and quality, reflecting a fusion of the best of modern Ireland.
A Pre-dine service will be available to customers travelling from New York JFK and Boston Airports. The new service will facilitate those customers who wish to sleep for the duration of the flight, meaning that as soon as the seat belt sign goes off, when cruising altitude is reached, the customer can convert their seat into a completely lie-flat bed for sleep.
Customers can enjoy the very best that in-flight entertainment has to offer on personal multi-touch 16’’ high definition monitors. Exclusive to Business Class guests, additional content will be available, adding 50% more new release movies, and 100% more TV content. The offering will include new release movies, classic movies and over 60 hours of TV, including full box sets, documentaries, comedies, business shows and music. Box sets will include top hits such as Northern Ireland’s famed Game of Thrones and the popular TV show True Detective. New games are featured on the in-flight entertainment system and exclusive HD games are available in the Business Class cabin.
The Panasonic ex2 system features remote control and touch screen capabilities, an intuitive system that can now be experienced in High Definition. This system is available gate to gate so customers can start watching as soon as they board. In addition a new Ireland Channel will be launched to showcase the best of the Island of Ireland in terms of television, tourism, business and Aer Lingus developments. There is a massage function in the seat for extra comfort.
The best in class products and services will include a redesigned and repositioned priority check in, enabling seamless airport navigation and greater efficiency and speed. Dedicated Business Class check-in desks called US Stations will always be open with staff trained to answer any questions in relation to ticketing, and Gold Circle matters.
Fast Track security will be available at all US airports and at Dublin and Shannon Airports. All parts of the US Customs and Border Protection Pre-clearance process are completed at Dublin and Shannon Airports in one quick and easy procedure. This facility offers Aer Lingus customers the ability to clear US Immigration and Customs in Ireland, which is the only European country to offer these facilities. The service means that customers travelling to the USA via Ireland are seen as domestic arriving passengers, enabling a speedy exit after long-haul flights.
A further benefit is use of the Aer Lingus exclusive Business Class lounges in Dublin, London Heathrow, Boston and, from March, Terminal 5 JFK. Business Class travellers are also invited to board at their leisure and will be welcomed with champagne, signature cocktails or orange juice. On arrival in Dublin, Business Class guests can avail of an exclusive Arrivals Lounge with a dedicated area to shower and steam clothes. Aer Lingus lounge guests also enjoy complimentary wi-fi access, allowing the customer to stay connected with up-to-date news and work throughout their visit.
Flights are on sale with lead in fares starting from €899 each way, including taxes and charges.