What Does Premium Economy Mean?Back to Forum
SimpleDXB – agree entirely with your assessment. My company had a fit of the economics 4-5 years ago and pushed us all to BA WT+ for long haul. It turned out that they had not negotiated a good discount from BA (our previous discount on CW was stunning) and the net result was that we paid nearly equivalent to CW fares for nearly equiivalent to Y class service.
Staff dissatisfaction was so complete that we had that rare thing these days – company climb down and return to CW for long haul flights. And I have not been anywhere near WT+ since!19 Feb 2010
I think that the assessment in BT magazine says it all, that there is so much variation that it is difficult to compare like for like. I have only done WT+ once from NYC – LHR, it was okay seat wise better than WT.
As for the food, I can’t remember what it was now, but I think you are wrong DXB, airline food is much better than 20 years ago. Taste buds are different in the air. I remember rushing to buy a bottle of Warr’s port becasue it tasted so good on Concorde. But it was great at 58,000 feet, but a bit medioca on the ground.19 Feb 2010
NTarrant, whilst I am fully aware of the effect that altitude has on the taste sense, that still doesn’t alter my opinion that most, if not all, airplane food is diabolical. When people start quibbling over the quality of airline food, it’s merely a comparison of degrees of mediocrity rather than quality – much in the same way that teenagers would argue whether Burger King is better than McDonalds. At the end of the day, it’s all processed, artificially flavoured and preserved, ultra heat treated crap.
Incidentally, I would also argue that airplane food has made any significant improvements over the last 20 years. Just because technology has improved (read advent of microwave, espresso machines etc on board), I do not think that the quality of food has got better. If anything, I think it has got worse!19 Feb 2010
Hi everyone !!
So what does Premium Economy mean ? Well, for me–definitely a superior product than Economy Class. Meaning more seat pitch, better recline, wider seat, better food&beverage, useable amenity kits, better blanket, larger pillows and good noise cancelling headphones
( or you bring your own ), updated Entertainment System etc.. So meaning far away from a normal Economy Class and more nearer to a Business Class product. We experienced a lot of new generation Premium Economy Class products being implemented by various airlines at the moment. But definitely ANZ’s PE product is in my eyes the best in this category. Apart from the new enhancements which are going to improve this product far more in the future. And of course the savings–between a PE class fare to a business class fare. Some of my colleagues told me that a PE class is alright for a day flight–even in longhaul flights. So this means a real competition with Business Class. I do agree that often it is hard to choose–whether to take a PE ticket like with BA and earned miles/tier points or take a slightly higher but almost the same price ticket in Business Class( with a flat bed in some cases for example EY)–but no miles or tier points in your fav alliance.
So in such circumstances–sticking in one’s fav airline alliance–meaning you have to fly PE rather than Bus. Class. It is really good to have such products like ANZ which gives you a nice price, good wide seat, nice pitch, good recline, business class food&beverage etc.. in their Premium Economy cabin—hope to see such products in BA and CX in the future—QF has alredy responded in the right way by improving and implementing a PE cabin. This product is good–but not as good as ANZ’s product. But in the end of the day—it is one’s individual choice to praise the best PE .19 Feb 2010
SimpleDXB it is all a matter of taste, I think that it is unreasonable to expect top noch restaurant food in the sky, irrespective of airline and sadly many do which leads to generalisations that the food is crap.
There is an element of truth in what you say about processed food on airlines, but that is not restricted to airlines, hotels, resturants are just as guilty of using processed foods and I suspect you are eating that crap as well, just that its not at 35,000 feet in an enclosed space.
I think we will have to agree to disagree DXB, this thread is after all about Premium Economy not airline food!20 Feb 2010
It cracks me up that as soon as anybody disagrees with a regular poster on this forum that the regular poster then cites ‘this thread is about….’ as a way of trying to short circuit the discussion. Pretty lame really. After all, like in real life (remember what that is?), topics of conversation ebb and flow.20 Feb 2010
Simple – sorry the truth hurts. The reality is that we disagree on the issue of food and this thread is about premium economy. We, yes, you and I are now spoling this thread for others. So get over it and move on, if you want to debate food start a new thread or look back on the airline listings and bring one back.20 Feb 2010
The catering component of the service is an interesting point. On the World Traveller Plus flight that got me thinking about this, my own personal thought was that the food wasn’t great – but it wasn’t bad at all.
Certainly, if I’d had it served to me in economy, I don’t think that I could have complained. Probably my greatest disappointment was the quantity – I was really rather hungry and the little tuck box in the galley was notable mostly for the paucity of its contents.
By contrast, if I’d flown Air New Zealand, I’d have had Business Premier catering – but paid £300 more for it. Personally then, I’d be keener to see more food on BA and keep the c£300 (or at least most of it) or, if travelling from T5 and the catering doesn’t change, I’d probably take a lunchbox from Plane Food on board with me. The latter would be a pragmatic approach to the situation though, and hardly suggests ‘premium’ economy. It would be wholly unsatisfactory for first-timers, especially conquests from other carriers, who could be quite disappointed at the suggestion that they’d have to partially self-cater on a premium economy flight, I’d imagine!
So, it sounds as though NTarrant would probably fall into a similar mindset as me and not value the absolute catering quality so highly, and perhaps SimpleDXB would attach a much greater importance to that component and pay more for it?
Edit: what tosh I just wrote! Sorry. I’ve just re-read the thread and seen that SimpleDXB doesn’t tend to eat in the air at all. OK: does anyone else attach significant value to the catering (above and beyond a basic standard of quality and quantity?)
Hess: can I ask if your take on NZ is perceptual or experiential? You mention ‘ANZ which gives you a nice price, good wide seat’. Are you thinking about price compared to Business Premier, and seat width of the newly-previewed product? The existing Premium Economy seat is, of course, the same width as standard economy on their 777s and just under an inch wider on the 744s. Or are you thinking that the extra cost of PE on NZ (vs say, BA) is a good price to pay for the priority check-in and catering etc? Price-wise, as far as I can see, on comparable routes, NZ tend to be a chunk more expensive than BA (NZ are in sale at the moment and BA aren’t, but there are dates where NZ fares are still c10% higher).
It was about 30% more to fly NZ when I did that LAX flight, from memory.20 Feb 2010
ContinentalClub I have said that airline catering has come a long way in the last 20 years and I attatch value to the onboard catering as part of the flight experience. It is not prefect everytime, but the same can be said for eating on the ground. The standard of a meal or rather the content of the meal should be better the further up the cabin you go, so what you were saying of your experience of premium economy is what I would have expected too.
I don’t see the point in paying for a meal in the terminal when you have paid for one on the flight. If you need a meal and only going to get bird seed then that is different.20 Feb 2010
Hi everyone !!
Continentalclub: you are right the seat is the same as Y cabin–as I tend to book the PE seat on the maindeck of the B747( row 27 till 30) where you only have 2 seats on each row and feels more exclusive. It is certainly perceptual as with only one person seating next to you and because of the configuration near the main galley–for me it is a quite ambience and feels more exclusive. So with the new PE seat and enhancements–I will be surprised, if this doesn’t outbid the existing PE product. Untill now-comparing fares of BA and ANZ and booking experiences–ANZ has most of my bookings in Premium Economy cabins. As I tend to save more with them than BA. As a tipp—I buy my ticket like FRA-LHR-HKG in the German site of ANZ and saved money comparing when I book in the UK site and state my journey only LHR-HKG. Well, last year I had more savings with ANZ. At the moment the fares with ANZ is not so good comparing to BA. So BA or QF might get my business this time.20 Feb 2010
It hadn’t occurred to me to look at the German site, Hess, despite being well-versed in the benefits of ex-EU pricing on BA, of course!
Actually, a quick scan of the current offers is quite strange and does indeed reflect what you mention; Air New Zealand PE to NZ is significantly *more* expensive commencing in Germany vs LHR, whilst Business Premier is marginally less expensive.21 Feb 2010