Airlines are Investing Big in Premium Seats – Here is Why

As more and more travelers are opting for upgrades to better their in-flight experiences making carries rethink cabin design, lounge experiences, and services. As a result, more airlines are investing big in premium seats. 
Premium economy

Airlines are Investing Big in Premium Seats

Over the past decade as travelers’ demand for luxury and comfort increased, many airlines introduced new seats and suites, delivering optimal comfort that even puts five-star hotels to shame. thanks to features like sliding privacy doors, plush bedding, and restaurant quality dining, many carriers have now become 5 star flying hotels that are the epitome of comfort. The pace for innovation shows no signs of slowing down as now many airlines are investing big in primary seats to reach the highest level of comfort they can offer in the air.

Among the innovations that have taken over the carriers of today some of the most notable ones are new premium economy cabin from emirates, Delta transforming its Delta One ground experience and opening new lounges, and United unveiling its biggest overhaul to Polars business class since launching the seats in the year 2016. However, this is only just the tip of the iceberg as there is so much more to come.  

Airlines are Investing Big in Premium Seats

Premium leisure travelers, who have had the pleasure to travel in a seat upfront are more eager for more swanky in-flight experiences, seeking more comfort and luxury. Afterall, who wants to go back to the back of the plane once they have flown at the pointy end. However, empty cabin seats and bargain basement prices that many of us got for premium seats during the pandemic are now a thing of the past as demand for travel has increased of COVID, and the prices of air travel have risen with a vengeance. Edward Russell, who is an aviation analyst and a reporter with Skift said:

“With generally lower price points to access premium seats during the pandemic, a lot of people got a taste of what these products are like, and they want more,” 

In fact even though airfare increased considerably this past summer carriers continued to leave their gates filed to the brim while airlines made record profits. Recorders from previous year have shown that leisure travelers are more than willing to pay extra to get the premium experience. Due to this not only are airlines rethinking their strategy for first class, business, and premium economy but also many airlines are investing big time in premium seats offering as any lavish perks as quickly as possible.  

The short and straight answer as to why airlines are investing big in premium seats an aspirational onboard experience is that it makes them a lot of many and passengers are not shying away from paying them. 

Premium Economy is the Future of Airline Travel – Airlines are Investing Big in Premium Seats

Premium seats

Even though premium economy is not the most glorious product, it does offer a middle ground between business class and economy. Which means that you get comfort, not the utmost comfort, but comfort, nevertheless, for less price. In the year 2016, American Airlines was the first carrier in the United States to introduce in its carrier’s long haul premium economy. Next year, American Airlines is all set to introduce a new, second generation of premium seats that offer more privacy and double in-seat storage space.  

Moreover, Delta Air Lines said its most recent earnings call that premium economy, or as the airline calls it Premium select is a “key contributor to record international margins.” On the other hand, executives at United Airlines provided more details on it earnings report and stated that in the third quarter of year, 2023, premium economy or Premium Plus was up seven time as compared to the levels recorded in 2019. 

If you think that only U.S airlines are the only that are going all in on this class of service, you are mistaken. Emirates the premium airline, also entered the premium economy war with a bang in the year 2022. It is said that in the coming year the Dubai-based airline will add about 1,608 premium seats to its Airbus A380 fleet of 67 aircraft as well as 1,032 premium economy seats to its 53 Boing 777 aircraft.

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