Virgin Atlantic 'whispering coach' to quiet down business class

By John Walton, February 29 2012
Virgin Atlantic 'whispering coach' to quiet down business class

Shhhh! That's the lesson for Virgin Atlantic's business class cabin crew, courtesy of a new 'whispering coach' (seriously, that's an actual job title!) who will teach flight attendants how to keep the noise down in flight.

Richard Fitzgerald promises to help the Virgin team learn to talk with passengers in a hush but still be heard clearly.

"It is incredibly important that all Virgin Atlantic's cabin crew have their skills honed in order to provide the most comfortable experience possible for our passengers," Fitzgerald says.

After a one-day training course Virgin Atlantic's Upper Class cabin crew should be able to chat with passengers at a volume level of between twenty and thirty decibels -- around half that of a normal spoken conversation on the ground.

"It's touches like these that make our inflight service second to none," Fitzgerald explains.

Virgin Atlantic's other touches including actual touching: cabin crew are trained on 'being tactile' and 'how to wake people comfortably'.

These very Branson-esque finesses to the flying formula are the latest in a swathe of improvements for Virgin Atlantic's revamped business class, which will also include new glassware and crockery (as we discussed during our series of articles during AusBT Food Week), ambient lighting and redesigned seats.

The current herringbone-style business class seat will be redesigned, and Virgin says the new Upper Class Dream Suite will be "the largest and most comfortable beds in the sky".

And if you're travelling between Sydney and Hong Kong (or on to London) on Virgin Atlantic, we've got insider guides to picking the best seat in business class on your way there.

John Walton

Aviation journalist and travel columnist John took his first long-haul flight when he was eight weeks old and hasn't looked back since. Well, except when facing rearwards in business class.

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