British Airways has revealed that the World Traveller seat on its forthcoming B787-9 aircraft will offer an extra half an inch of width.

The revelation has been published in the carrier’s Up To Speed staff magazine, but has not yet been officially announced by BA.

In the publication’s August edition, Kathryn Doyle, BA’s manager of product development cabin interiors, said: “Front-line colleagues shared feedback from customers on the B787-8, who said the seats felt a bit tight”.

She added: “We listened to that and challenged our seat supplier to come up with a solution that would achieve parity with competitors and satisfy customers. The result is a seat that is half an inch wider, which we believe will improve customer comfort.”

The move follows negative feedback on the economy layout of seats on B787-8 aircraft, not just for British Airways, but for many other airlines flying the configuration (subscribers can read a feature, Feel The Squeeze, by our consumer editor Alex McWhirter here).

A member of BA’s flight crew also recently wrote a blog piece for our site in which they said that economy customers on the B787-8 were “unhappy with the seating”.

The tight nine-across (3-3-3) seating on the B787 Dreamliners has led Airbus to launch its own new-generation A350 aircraft with the designation A350 XWB. The acronym represents Extra Wide Body, referring to an extra five inches in the cabin width along with a “Feel the Space” advertising line.

To view the seatplan for BA’s B787-9 aircraft — which, unlike the B787-8 includes a first class cabin — click here.

In other news, the latest edition of Up To Speed also confirms that, after launching on the London-Delhi route (see news, July 13), destinations for BA’s B787-9 aircraft will include Abu Dhabi, Kuala Lumpur and Muscat.

Mark Caswell