Air New Zealand may be coming one step closer to solving the hell that is long haul coach. Starting next April, the airline plans to sell unsold coach class seats to passengers.
Now, an empty seat certainly is worth something, but the airline will take that one step further by turning these empty seats into a lie-flat bed.
The description does not go into too much detail, but apparently by sliding the seats forward and raising the foot rest, the seats will allow you to lie down flat and grab a couple of hours of sleep. The new seat design is the brainchild of Altitude Aerospace Interiors, an Air New Zealand subsidiary.
Empty seats will sell for $150, which is about in line with what I’d be willing to pay for the luxury of sleeping in coach.
According to aviation analysts, the design has the potential of earning the airline an additional $60 million each year.
If Air New Zealand can pull this off, they’ll be the first airline to offer lie-flat beds in coach, hopefully starting a trend that other airlines are eager to copy.