A new No-Middle-Seats aircraft from Corporate Traveller
Let’s face it, as far as comfort is concerned, commercial flying in Economy class is near the bottom of the list. And for those unfortunate enough to be stuck in the middle seat, it is a sobering, sometimes even horrifying experience - no leg-room, no personal space and no easy exit.
To make flying more palatable, some airlines offer premium seating options. Air New Zealand may have the Skycouch and Etihad Airways The Apartment, but no service has looked after every single passenger on board - until now.
A deal 16-months in the making is finally close to take-off with news unveiled today that Canada’s premier business travel management company, Corporate Traveller, is in final stages to launch a new aircraft set to revolutionize business travel.
The journey so far
What began as a catchy marketing campaign vowing to never put customers in the middle seat, quickly blossomed into an idea with one simple goal: to offer the most comfortable business travel experience to everyone. Based on some quirky research questions posted on Social Media, it was clear that there was a considerable dislike of the middle seat when it comes to travel. For example, 91% of travellers would rather pay for their own drinks on a 5-hour flight than sit in the middle seat with free drinks. Or a whopping 94% of travellers would rather take a one-hour delay than sit in the dreaded middle seat.
These stats, along with several others, sparked the idea of a no-middle-seats aircraft. As Chris Lynes, SVP of Corporate Division at Flight Centre Travel Group, says: "It was actually quite easy. We listened to our customers, and we acted. For business travellers, comfort is paramount, so we literally removed every single middle seat on a widebody jet.”
Inside the aircraft
The new design is slick. The tight configuration that is usually found in 'Economy Class' of 3-3-3 is now a decadent 1-1-1-1 'Corporate Class' cabin, with two window and two double-aisle seats per row, creating the industry’s widest aisles and exciting new possibilities at cruising altitude. For passengers who like to fly up front, Corporate Traveller is re-introducing 'First Class', featuring an in-flight barber, esthetician, personal dry-cleaning services and a yoga instructor, all so that you can arrive ready and relaxed for your meetings.
Additionally, if you're seated in 'Corporate Class' you'll never wait behind a drink cart again with designated one-way aisles for easy traffic movement of passengers (see diagram). Aisle traffic is expected to move so freely that travellers will even be able to squeeze in a light run on long-haul flights. It's important to maintain your health while on the road! (unfortunately, passengers will not be able to accrue additional frequent flyer miles for every mile they run while in the air).
Routes, schedules and introductory fares are set to be announced in the coming days, with priority access to inventory saved for current Corporate Traveller customers.
Window or Aisle? We Mean It!
Lynes explains further, “Nobody ever wants the middle seat and now no one will have to have one. At Corporate Traveller, we understand what sitting in the middle seat is all about because we are travellers, too. You’ve flown the rest, now fly the best. Aboard Corporate Traveller’s new aircraft, it's actually impossible to end up in a middle seat. And every business traveller deserves that!”
If we could, we would.