Business vs. Economy: The Growing Gap Between the Haves and the Have-Nots

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  • MarcusUK

    I travel to Asia quite a lot sometimes on to Australia. More East travel than west.

    I have considered Eva Air a few times but not booked, and the reviews always seem positive with them for PE, though mainly into the BKK gateway for Asia.I do not earn anything one of the incentives on who i choose, for miles… Anyone flown them to compare?

    VS obviously appear to offer a decent PE, but again they are mainly to HKG and not (yet?) to SIN / KUL / BKK, so a bit far north Asia for me.

    Anyone used the Chinese PE cabins? Ar China, China Eastern, China Southern? They have many flights out of AMS and LHR for PE seats. Though i know they do not have the best reputations for Airlines…

    KLM seem to have seats that were the same as Y, but a little extra room at the front of the cabin. U can tailor your service a little (as with Y) by ordering premium set meals which is ideal for a little extra. Such a shame that an Airline does not make more of an effort in these tough times, by making a specific cabin, with a different service, better food etc.

    Qantas probably goes off the radar for us in the UK a little now with all the changes, but their PE as well as Air New Zealand, also now only via LAX for us in the UK, appeared to really make a big effort with the PE sections. They offer something different and better in service.

    I think there is such an opportunity there for Airlines at this time, to innovate a little, or make PE a little more special and different than it is?

    The costs for PE overall are invariably x 2 Y or more. The Airline that highlights and promotes, or creates this, could really make a great step forwards in terms of in-action of other carriers at this stage. After all, their is not much more space used than Y, but a little more fizz on the service and ambiance, could make it quite profitable?

    AF and KLM, have introduced PE areas on their cabin layouts in Europe. their is NO difference in the seats, and they just sit in the forward areas of the plane behind Business. Even as a Gold card holder, I am quite annoyed by it, and not willing to pay £20 each way extra, to choose these seats, though when you get on an AF flight that is not full, you find 8 rows unoccupied!
    It seems AF run lots of unprofitable flights, but they have got hived off now to “Hop”!
    On check in or booking you choose your seat, but from rows 5-10 they are all now listed as PE!

    Fictitious PE areas on European flights will not be popular, when they do not exist in reality in terms of the seat type or space, or services.
    I will not be paying for them, even though as a gold card holder it shoves you back to row 10+! If the flights are full, they will have to fill these seats, even if people will not pay for them! Not when you pay non-low cost Airlines fares in Europe.


    Going back to the original post which focuses on Economy and not PE, the following is a (rather snide, I admit it) comment in my recent review of a CX Economy flight from LHR to HKG.

    “For the second time in just over a week, I slept like a baby on a long-haul flight in Economy – the previous time was on BA – so I can readily vouch that the highfalutin airs and graces of those on this forum who would not deign to fly economy are, perhaps, exaggeration born of status sensitivity rather than direct experience. It ain’t so bad at all and 7.5 hours of undisturbed sleep is testimony to this”.

    While there is cleary hugh variation between the Economy cabins of airlines, I would certainly not hesitate to travel Economy with either BA or CX again – and I will do because of the way my travel is often funded. From both a comfort and service point of view, both were just fine.


    Just talked to a German colleague who, as she put it, had endured LH Economy from Frankfurt to Bangkok where the cabin crew were rude, unsympathertic about luggage issues, aggressive to the point of threatening a passenger with mobility problems with the police unless he moved from his (previously booked) seat as well as an uncomfortable seat and poor food. She would choose Thai or Vietnam Airlines Economy class over LH any day!! So maybe airlines which invest heavily at the front of their cabin do so while ignoring the rear – is this a sustainable business model? Given that Lufthansa are rumoured to be looking at a long-haul LCC model to operate on routes where full-service is not profitable (SE Asia), the debate on this forum is likely to continue.


    Quite surprised to read this report about Lufthansa.

    I’ve found their staff “abrupt” and lacking a sense of humour, but never rude.


    What is this ‘economy’ class people keep talking about?

    I’ve always just assumed that behind the curtain was a big kitchen where the cabin crew prepare all the 17 meal choices I have become acustomed to having everytime I fly on any airline anywhere.

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