Premium economy coming to Delta
Tuesday 08 February 2011
US airline Delta is to become the latest carrier to introduce a "premium economy" section on board its long-haul flights.
Following in the footsteps of its competitor United, the airline announced February 7 that it will introduce "Economy Comfort" on all long-haul flights this summer, available for an extra $80-$160 one-way.
The service provides up to four extra inches (10 cm) of leg room and 50 percent more recline than standard economy seats, said Delta in a statement, with discounts available for top-tier members of its loyalty club, SkyMiles.
Other services include early boarding and complimentary spirits throughout the flight.
Delta's new premium economy offering puts it on par with its alliance colleagues Air France and KLM, which both offer premium economy services, as well as plenty of other international carriers such as Virgin Atlantic, ANA, Japan Airlines and British Airways.
By US standards though, the airline is bucking the trend somewhat - with the exception of United, major US carriers have been reluctant to install premium economy cabins for fear that they could cannibalize business class sales.
With the wallets of both business and leisure travelers straitened for the foreseeable future, Delta may have sniffed out an opportunity to provide a higher-quality product for those who would like the luxury, but without a significant price hike.
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