From February 2017, all seven of the airline’s Boeing 777-300s will also progressively complete a refurbishment programme, including the installation of the Panasonic eX3 in-flight entertainment system customers already enjoy on the Dreamliner fleet, and refreshed seating options.
Each of the 777-300s’ interiors will be completely refurbished as part of the project. The refurbished aircraft will feature refreshed Business Premier and Economy seats as well as Air New Zealand’s luxury leather Premium Economy seat which debuted on the 787-9 Dreamliner in July 2014. These will replace the Spaceseat and take the number of Premium Economy seats on this aircraft from 44 to 54.
The Boeing 777-300 refurbishment program is expected to be completed by late November 2017. From September 6, all flights AKL/LHR/AKL (via LAX) will be the upgraded aircraft for consistency of product across the entire journey. Please note, due scheduling and maintenance customers may experience the new configuration on AKL/LHR/AKL flights prior to September 6.
You can identify a refurbished 777-300 in your GDS when you see code '77W' as the aircraft type.
What changes will be made to the 777-300?
Air New Zealand will progressively refit its 777-300 fleet to bring the onboard long haul customer experience into line with the high level of inflight comfort already enjoyed on the airline’s 787-9 aircraft and its refurbished 777-200 aircraft. Business Premier seats and Economy seats will be refreshed, along with the Inflight Entertainment System. The refurbished aircraft will feature Air New Zealand’s luxury leather Premium Economy seat which debuted on the Dreamliner in July 2014. These will replace the Spaceseat. Air New Zealand’s Economy Skycouch will continue to be available on the refitted 777-300.
The refurbishment commenced in February 2017.
Why is the Spaceseat being removed from the 777-300?
At the time the 777-300 aircraft were introduced to our fleet the Spaceseat was the latest technology, specially designed for our aircraft and the product has proven very popular with our customers.
However, seating technology and materials have come a long way in the years since and our customer research now shows consistently higher satisfaction scores for our newest Premium Economy offering, which is fitted to our 787-9 Dreamliner and recently refurbished 777-200.
With these changes, we look forward to being able to offer a consistent Premium Economy product right across our long haul fleet.
Will you be adding more Premium Economy seats to the cabin?
Our Premium Economy product, which was first introduced in 2005 has become increasingly popular across our fleet. Moving to the luxury leather Premium Economy seat on the 777-300 allows us to increase the number of seats in this cabin by 10 – from 44 to 54.
When will the refresh take place?
The aircraft refurbishment programme commenced in February 2017 with all aircraft refits expected to be completed by the end of November 2017.
Each aircraft refurbishment will take about four to seven weeks to complete.
Will these changes effect the Premium Economy fare price?
As with all airlines our pricing is dynamic and moves according to customer demand. Naturally, with more seats in Premium Economy, there are likely to be more cheaper seats available in that class on each flight.
Both seats are of equal value, offer comparable comfort and customers will receive the same high quality Kiwi hospitality onboard.
What does this mean for customers who believe they booked to travel on the Spaceseat?
As the refurbishment program rolls out there will be a mix of Premium Economy seats on our Boeing 777-300 aircraft and for operational reasons we will be unable to confirm in advance to passengers who have already booked flights if they will receive the Spaceseat. Customers may instead travel on our new, more modern Premium Economy luxury leather seat on the 777-300 which has proven very popular with our customers. They will also receive all of the other benefits of travelling in Premium Economy including a designated check-in area, amenity kit and delicious New Zealand food and wine. Both seats are of equal value, offer comparable comfort and customers will receive the same high quality Kiwi hospitality onboard.
From September 1, all flights AKL/LHR/AKL (via LAX) will be the upgraded aircraft.
This change will be communicated to our customers to ensure customers aren’t surprised by the type of seat they are offered when they get onboard.
Can a customer change to Economy and be refunded the difference?
Yes a customer can do this if they wish. They will receive the difference between the Economy class fare that’s available at the time of rebooking and the Premium Economy fare they’d purchased originally.
What is the new configuration of the Premium Economy cabin?
The new configuration in the Premium Economy cabin is 2-4-2.
The configuration of the 777-300 is:
44 Business Premier seats
54 Premium Economy seats (up from 44)
244 Economy seats
What will the seat pitch be in Premium Economy with the new configuration?
The seat pitch in Premium Economy will be 41”-42” pitch.
Will the refreshed Economy class seats have less/more leg room?
There will be no change to the leg room or seat pitch in Economy. The seat pitch remains at 32”- 33” pitch.
The economy seat will have a completely new seat back installed which is slimmer than the existing Economy seatback, allowing an additional 1.5” of personal space for the customer seated behind.
Will they be the same width as existing Economy class?
There will be no change to the seat width of the Economy seats. Seat width remains at 17.1”
Will there be more Business Premier seats on the 777-300?
No the number of seats in Business Premier will remain at 44.
Will the Business Premier seats be the same as on the 777-200?
Yes the Business Premier seats on the refurbished 777-300 will be the same as the chalk-coloured Business Premier seats on the 777-200.