Emirates has announced the launch of its Premium Economy product.
Sales start from June 1, and the official launch of the product takes place August 1.
Unfortunately, flights to South Africa are not slated for the launch. These six aircraft already equipped with the Premium Economy cabin will initially be used on the London Heathrow, Paris Charles de Gaulle, Christchurch and Sydney routes.
On a four-class Emirates A380, the Premium Economy cabin is located at the front of the main deck with 56 seats laid out in 2-4-2 configuration. On the Emirates Boeing 777, up to 24 Premium Economy seats will be installed in a dedicated cabin section between Business and Economy.
EK’s Premium Economy Class features:
*Dedicated check-in area at Dubai International Airport, or clients may use a self check-in kiosk.
*Luxurious seats: With 6-way adjustable headrests, the cream leather seats have a generous pitch of up to 40 inches (102cm), and a width of 19,5 inches. (50cm) Recline is 8 inches (20cm), into a comfortable cradle position with ample room to stretch out. It also offers calf rests and footrests for additional comfort, in addition to many other thoughtful touches such as easily accessible in-seat charging points and a side cocktail table.
*Comfort: Soft, sustainable blankets made from recycled plastic bottles, a generously sized pillow, both designed uniquely for Premium Economy. Travellers can refresh themselves with the complimentary amenity kits which come in reusable, sustainable bags, and contain items which are all made with some element of recycled or sustainable materials.
*Dining experience: Incorporates elements inspired by Business Class. Customers will be welcomed onboard with a welcome drink in fine glassware. During meal service, a selection of generous meals made with seasonal ingredients and regional influences will be served on chinaware, accompanied by stainless steel cutlery wrapped in linen napkin. The drinks menu will include a selection of beverages including premium wines and a sparkling Chandon wine. There are also liqueurs available after meals, with chocolates.
*Entertainment: Each seat has a 13,3 inch (34cm) screen, one of the largest in its class, to enjoy the unmatched array of up to 5 000 channels of music, movies, TV, news and other content on Emirates’ award-winning ice.
Sir Tim Clark, EK’s President, said the intention of the airline is to offer the product to many more markets across its network. “Since we first introduced our Premium Economy seats in January 2021, the positive response and demand has been tremendous… This November, we will begin our retrofit programme to install Premium Economy on 67 A380s and 53 Boeing 777s. At the end of the programme, Emirates will have 126 aircraft fitted out with Premium Economy cabins, as well as our latest interiors across other cabins. It is a major investment to ensure our customers continue to have the best experience in the sky.”
The local retail travel trade and its corporate clients will no doubt be on tenterhooks waiting to hear when they can sell this interesting product on the South Africa routes - and, of course, how the pricing will look.
Emirates currently has a new, sharper focus on the customer experience – the carrier says it is creating its next generation hospitality programme with the Swiss hotel school Ecole hôtelière de Lausanne (EHL), consistently rated amongst the world’s top hospitality management schools.
The carrier has already incorporated elements of its new hospitality principles into its soon-to-launch Premium Economy service, as its cabin crew learn how to deliver Emirates’ latest inflight experience from food presentation and offering of welcome drinks, to complimentary amenities and other little touches, according to a release from the carrier.
Emirates says it is the only airline in the region to offer this product.