British Airways introduced seats that convert to a flat bed for business class passengers to the airline industry with Club World back in 2000. An updated version arrived in 2006 and today the airline has announced its replacement, the new Club Suite product.
Expected to debut when the Airbus A350 is introduced in July, the British carrier expects six aircraft to have the new product by the end of 2019. It will then gradually roll out to the rest of the fleet.
Club Suite at British Airways
On delivery, the new aircraft will operate short-haul services for crew familiarisation. From 1 October they are expected to move to international services. So what about the new seat? There is a video below which shows it very well.
Standing out immediately is the door to each suite, which provides a level of privacy hitherto unheard of at British Airways. This will be very welcome, especially to those who habitually sit in an aisle seat.
Configured in a 1-2-1 pattern, direct aisle access will be provided for every passenger. This removes the need to step over your neighbour if you’re in the window seat, one aspect where Club World had fallen behind the competition.
Club Suite passengers will find 40% more storage than today, with a seat that measures 2 metres long in flat bed mode. That’s a whole 79 inches for the folks in the USA.
Inflight entertainment screens will be fixed, meaning they can be used from gate to gate. Sized at a generous 18.5 inches, the high definition screens will be a huge improvement over the current offering.
With over 125 aircraft in the long-haul fleet, it will take quite some time for the new Club Suite to roll out. As the Boeing 747 aircraft are leaving in 2024, it is certain the new seat won’t make it onto this aircraft type.
Based on the Super Diamond seat manufactured by Collins Aerospace in Northern Ireland, it marks the first time in 20 years that BA won’t have its own bespoke seat. As it has a door, it means the Club Suite is arguably better than the current first class seat.
If the seat looks familiar, is already in service with a number of airlines such as Qatar Airways, KLM, American Airlines, Hong Kong Airlines, Air Canada, WestJet, China Airlines and Virgin Australia.
What do you think of the new Club Suite product for British Airways? Does this new business class have the wow factor? Thank you for reading and if you have any comments or questions, please leave them below.
All images via British Airways.