Cathay Pacific Airways today announced it would install a version of its new First Class cabin on its fleet of Airbus Industrie aircraft beginning in January next year. The decision reflects the extremely good response given to the new cabin since it was introduced on the airline`s fleet of Boeing 747-400s in May last year. The new cabin will be installed on 12 of Cathay Pacific`s Airbus A340-300s and four of its Airbus A330-300s.
The new First Class cabin offers the world`s most exclusive and elegant travel experience. The centrepiece is a highly comfortable seat which can recline into a fully horizontal bed. The cabin services also include fully adjustable personal televisions, a Personal Cinema with up to 30 movie choices, freshly prepared meals, and luxurious duvets and sleeper suits. Cabin crew who work in the new First Class cabin receive special training to deliver service excellence.
Cathay Pacific`s Director Service Delivery Robert Cutler said: “Our front-end customers have told us they love our new First Class cabin with surveys showing very high approval ratings for both cabin ambience and service. We are very pleased we can now extend this same level of service to our Airbus fleet enabling all our long-haul passengers the chance to experience our new First Class.”
Cathay Pacific currently operates a fleet of 65 wide-bodied aircraft including 14 A340s and 12 A330s. The airline has outstanding orders for a number of further aircraft including another A340 and another seven A330s. The A340 on order will arrive next February and will be the first of the Airbus fleet to be installed with the new First Class cabin. Eleven of the 14 existing A340s will then fitted with the new cabin over the following 18 months. Four of the A330s or order will arrive with the new cabin already installed.
Cathay Pacific operates its A340s on long-haul routes such as between Hong Kong and Rome, Zurich, and San Francisco. The aircraft are currently configured to carry 12 passengers in First Class, 40 in Business Class, and 197 in Economy Class. The new configuration will be 8 in First Class, 38 in Business Class, and 197 in Economy Class. Having just 8 seats in First Class offers passengers greater exclusivity, more individual space, and privacy.
The airline`s A330s are used on short-haul and medium-haul routes such as between Hong Kong and Bali, Cairns, and Surabaya. They currently carry 311 passengers in two classes. The A330s with the new First Class cabin will have 8 seats in First Class, 32 in Business Class, and 211 in Economy Class. Those with the new First Class cabin will serve medium-haul routes.