Startup US carrier Breeze Airways will begin flying its first Airbus A220s in October, and unlike the airline's all-economy Embraer E190 and E195 jets, the A220s will be crowned by a 'premium' cabin.
US airlines generally call this first class – the rest of the world largely calls it business class – but Breeze being different, it'll be badged and sold simply as the 'Nicest' cabin, to differentiate it from standard economy (aka Nice) and 'economy plus' (Nicer).
Regardless of the marketing moniker, here is what Breeze's premium flyers will see at the pointy end of those A220s.
The seat itself is the new Z600 model from Safran, which says the seat was "selected by Breeze Airways to equip its Airbus A220."
Safran also says Breeze is the launch customer for the Z600, seen here in Safran's official PR photos and without any Breeze customisation such as colours and finishes.
Safran touts the Z600 as being a "business class seat for short-haul and medium-haul flights."
"Designed to make business class travelers' flight most enjoyable, the Z600 seat provides an exclusive comfort and living space," Safran notes.
A 'cradling motion kinematic' design provides "a higher recline angle than traditional solutions with 50% less intrusion into the living space of the next passenger."
A recess under the armrest affords room to stow headphones or a tablet, and of course there's AC/USB power outlets too.
Breeze's Airbus A220s will see the first class nicest class seat arranged in a 2-2 layout, with economy configured in a 2-3 grid. A a spokesman for Breeze declined to offer Executive Traveller any further details such as pitch.
Other premium perks of Breeze's A220 Nicest category will include a free carry-on bag and checked bag, complimentary drinks and snacks, and priority boarding.
Where Breeze will fly its Airbus A220s
Breeze has inked an order for between 60 and 80 of the A220-300 series jets, each of which has a capacity of 120-150 passengers depending on the seating configuration.
While the nimble Embraer jets will dart on direct flights between smaller cities, the A220s will be dedicated to routes of two hours or more, including carving a corridor for mid-size cities and potentially transcontinental flights between the east and west coasts.
"They are separate missions – one is an apple and one is an orange," Breeze Airways founder and CEO David Neeleman noted in early 2020. "Those planes will never fly on the same route. They won't be in the same universe, really."
The A220s will eventually spread their wings to short-range international flights with the addition of an extra fuel tank at Neeleman's request.
"It is under way, so we are... kind of arguing about when. But it is not a matter of 'if,' it is just a matter of 'when'," Neeleman told news agency Reuters.
"We need to get up to 4,000 (nautical) miles," he added, compared to the A220-300's current reach of 3,400nm (6,300 km).
"We can fly them to Europe, we can fly them to South America, even to Hawaii," Neeleman suggested in 2020. "We can do a lot of different things with that airplane."