Aer Lingus today announced details of the new business class experience which will be launched on transatlantic flights from March 2015. The service will provide a unique differentiator for Aer Lingus and will ensure that customers experience the best of smart travel with high levels of comfort and sophistication.
Speaking at the official launch of the new Business Class service at the Royal Hospital Kilmainham in Dublin, Aer Lingus Chief Executive Christoph Mueller said, “Our long haul business has grown at record pace over the past two years. We continually strive to improve our customers’ Aer Lingus experience offering greater convenience and product enhancements. We have increased the number of destinations to which we fly. We have introduced high speed Wi-Fi on our services to the U.S. We clear U.S. customs in Ireland. Now we are delighted to upgrade our entire business class experience offering our customers an excellent environment to work, relax, dine and sleep. We want to thank all of our business class customers for their continued support for our service.”
Benefits of new Business Class service:
The Business Class service will provide a unique space based on a customer’s needs - depending on whether they wish to sleep, work, dine or simply relax. This will be facilitated by the new custom designed Vantage seat which converts into a full-lie-flat bed. Due to the popularity of the business class service in recent years the number of business class seats on our long haul fleet will increase.
Portadown based Thompson Aero has created the new Vantage Seat, the central element of the new business class service. The bespoke full lie-flat seat delivers the possibility of a blissful sleep that will allow customers arrive at their destination 100% rested and ready to get on with their day. The new seat transforms in to a fully-flat 6’6’’ (2 metres) bed, which is one of the longest in the industry with a seat width of 22’’. The business class cabin has been designed so that 90% of the seats have direct aisle access, giving greater privacy and the ability to get in and out of seats with ease.
Irish supplier Botany Weaving, based in Cork Street in Dublin has provided the fabrics for the Business Class cabin including seat covers, carpets and curtains – all beautifully designed in vibrant fibres to reflect our Irish weaving heritage.
Aer Lingus has redefined how to work when crossing the Atlantic – allowing customers to stay connected in-flight, with Panasonic, Deutsche Telekom and Aeromobile, offering complimentary Wi-Fi which can be accessed through personal devices, and a mobile network that allows customers to send and receive texts and data.
The newly refurbished cabin has built in power points with universal sockets and USB power outlets, alongside ample work space. Stowage has been increased to allow for mini tablets to be stored under the personal monitor and laptops can be stored in specially designed stowage space. Special pockets for phones have been created and work lights with a dimming feature are standard on all seats.
Aer Lingus’ commitment to Irish suppliers is evident across the newly designed business class menu created in consultation with Aer Lingus Executive Chef, James Keaveney and Irish food consultant, Hugo Arnold. The new menu will feature signature dishes from the best Irish restaurants across the four provinces of Ireland. Seasonally driven, the menu will be changed four times yearly using the finest Irish ingredients to guarantee freshness and quality - reflecting a fusion of the best of modern Ireland.
A Pre-dine service will be available to customers travelling from John F. Kennedy and Boston airports. The new service will facilitate those customers who wish to sleep for the duration of the flight meaning that as soon as the seat belt sign goes off, when cruising altitude is reached, the customer can convert their seat into a completely lie-flat bed for sleep.
Customers can enjoy the very best that in-flight entertainment has to offer on personal multi touch 16’’ high definition monitors. Exclusive to business class guests, additional content will be available, adding 50% more new release movies, and 100% more TV content. The offering will include new release movies, classic movies and over 60 hours of TV, including full box sets, documentaries, comedies, business shows and music. Box sets will include top hits such as Northern Ireland’s famed Game of Thrones and the hugely popular TV show True Detective. New games are featured on the in-flight entertainment system and exclusive HD games are available in the business cabin. The Panasonic ex2 system features remote control and touch screen capabilities, an intuitive system that can now be experienced in High Definition. This system is available gate to gate so customers can start watching as soon as they board. In addition a new Ireland Channel will be launched to showcase the best of the Island of Ireland in terms of television, tourism, business and Aer Lingus developments. There is a massage function in the seat for extra comfort.
The best in class products and services will include a redesigned and repositioned priority check in, enabling seamless airport navigation and greater efficiency and speed. Dedicated business class check-in desks called US Stations will always be open with staff trained to answer any questions in relation to ticketing, and Gold Circle matters. Fast Track security will be available at all U.S. airports and at Dublin and Shannon airports. All parts of the U.S. Customs and Border Protection Pre-clearance process are completed at Dublin and Shannon airports in one quick and easy procedure. This facility offers Aer Lingus customers the ability to clear US immigration and customs in Ireland or as we describe it – ‘you can arrive before you depart’. Ireland is the only European country to offer these state-of-the-art facilities. The service means that customers travelling to the States via Ireland are seen as domestic arriving passengers, enabling a speedy exit after long haul flights.
A further benefit is use of the Aer Lingus exclusive business lounges in Dublin, London Heathrow, Boston and, from March, Terminal 5 JFK. Business class travellers are also invited to board at their leisure and will be welcomed with champagne, signature cocktails or orange juice. On arrival in Dublin, business class guests can avail of an exclusive Arrivals Lounge with a dedicated area to shower and steam clothes. Aer Lingus lounge guests also enjoy complimentary Wi-Fi access allowing the customer to stay connected with up to date news and work throughout their visit.
Flights are on sale with lead in fares starting from €899 each way including taxes and charges.
For more information, visit www.aerlingus.com