Airbus wants airlines to have inflight bars on the A330neo

By Chris C., October 27 2016
Airbus wants airlines to have inflight bars on the A330neo

Inflight bars and lounges are usually the domain of Airbus A380 superjumbos, but the aircraft manufacturer is eyeing the concept for its smaller A330neo jets, due to fly their first passengers by the end of 2017.

A modernised version of the existing Airbus A330s already flying with the likes of Qantas, Virgin Australia and Etihad Airways, the A330neo offers airlines a “unique and customisable welcome area at the main passenger boarding door”, says Airbus.

That’s precisely where you could plonk an inflight bar – and during a visit to Airbus headquarters in Toulouse, Australian Business Traveller spotted one such mock-up: a simple bar with space for travellers to stand and pour Scotch, or have it served by the crew:

Airlines may choose to keep the default Airbus ‘Airspace’ pattern overhead for a funky look and feel…

… or could completely customise it to suit their own brand or design theme:

Disguised as regular air vents, micro data projectors can also help set the mood in the bar zone…

… whether displaying text and graphics on the surrounding cabin walls, on the floor below or even on passengers themselves, as we experience while exploring the bar mock-up:

But as to whether an inflight bar will ever take wing on an Airbus A330neo, that’s ultimately a decision left to the airlines buying the aircraft.

More on inflight cocktail bars and lounges:

Chris Chamberlin travelled to Toulouse as a guest of Airbus.

Chris C.

Chris is a a former contributor to Executive Traveller.

Qantas - Qantas Frequent Flyer

18 May 2011

Total posts 232

It'll be really good if those little projectors could show the footy or the cricket.

Sports bar on board eeeek!....gouge my eyes with a fork right now!


Emirates Airlines - Skywards

30 Nov 2015

Total posts 730

I don't see why bars have to just for Super jumbos.  This is a good idea, hopefully the better airlines will pick this up.


Emirates Airlines - Skywards

30 Nov 2015

Total posts 730

Sports bars, oh the types...

08 Apr 2011

Total posts 24

Oh no! That would be a bit of a nightmare on a much smaller jet. On the 330 everyone seated around the bar would effectively be forced to be 'at the bar' even if they don't want to be!


25 Feb 2014

Total posts 20

I hope its a self serve bar - that would hilarious!
Airbus clearly doesnt understand Mass Pschology Principles.

Virgin Australia - Velocity Rewards Gold

04 Jul 2014

Total posts 130

Let's not forget that Virgin Atlantic already have bars on their A330's.

31 May 2016

Total posts 10

Yes but Virgin's A330 bar is only for the Upper Class cabin. In that context, it works.  I don't think it would work for economy class.  Best we could hope for is a limited self-serve area with a few drinks and snacks.

Qantas - Qantas Frequent Flyer

02 Jul 2011

Total posts 1378

Or of course they could be like Finnair and put in a standard galley in the entry, rather than wasting the vertical space.

Function or form.

Virgin Australia - Velocity Rewards

07 Dec 2014

Total posts 172

Is there a bulkhead wall missing in the first photo because this is just for show, or are the entire economy and premium economy cabins meant to be staring at the bar?

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