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British Airways is conducting closed-door tests of its next generation Club World business class seat ahead of its early 2019 debut on the airline's new Airbus A350-1000 fleet.
Speaking at a UK business leaders event in London recently, BA chief executive office Alex Cruz said the mock-up cabin offers "more privacy" as well as better storage built around specific items including water bottles and reading glasses.
“It really is something else," Cruz remarked of the seat, which will include direct aisle access for all passengers.
Cruz also observed that 23 years ago British Airways unveiled the world’s first flat-bed business class seat, “but the bad news is that we still have it," adding that – in a reference to BA's current Club World business class – a "2-4-2" layout was no longer competitive.
This could indicate that BA will revise its high-density business class layout for a modern and more spacious 1-2-1 configuration.
Following the rollout of BA's new business class seat, the airline will turn its attention to an all-new first class.
Cruz suggests the challenge will be "to conceive the new first class experience of the future” – but with less reliance on the 'hard product' of the seat and its surroundings and more on 'soft product' such as meals, drinks and overall service as a differentiator.
[Source: Head for Points]