Qantas partner Finnair is revamping its business class, removing the angled lie-flat seats currently on board most of its long-haul planes and replacing them with more comfortable and spacious fully flat beds.
With Finnair to remain as a Qantas codeshare partner once the Red Roo's alliance with Emirates goes into effect on April 1, business travellers keen to maximise their Qantas Frequent Flyer balance are set to gain a decent fully flat option across the "Reindeer Route" for getting to Europe.
Fully flat beds are markedly better than angled lie-flat seats: find out why as AusBT puts the truth to the "lie-flat lie".
The Zodiac Vantage seats are already found on some of Finnair's Airbus A330 jets, and will be installed across the airline's fifteen-strong A330 and A340 fleet — with the exception of three of the oldest jets, which are currently planned for retirement in 2015.
In bed mode, the seats extend to 200 cm (79"), and they're 58 cm (23") wide at the shoulder when reclined.
The staggered layout means that most seats have direct aisle access, with only a few requiring window passengers to pick their way gingerly over the slumbering aisle neighbour next to them.
The best on the plane are the solo seats next to the windows, but beware the "throne" type.
These have lots of elbow room when you're working, eating or relaxing, but the footwell is a little constrained when it comes time to convert your seat to a bed. There's actually more room in the middle section or in the solo seats on the other side of the plane.
Curious about the rest of the Finnair experience when heading to Europe? We've got you covered with a full review of the Finnair "Reindeer Route" from Australia to Europe via Asia and Helsinki.
Keep up to the minute with business travel news and the information frequent flyers need: follow @AusBT on Twitter.