Both Flydubai and Saudia are adding business class seats with “significantly more privacy”, to woo ever-more demanding air passengers. Jenny Southan reports
Ten years after Flydubai launched its first business class product, it has now announced a new arrival of a new seat, which will feature sliding doors (the ultimate business class status symbol, these days) and direct aisle access for all passengers.
Designed by Safran Seats and JPA Design, other features include “thoughtful stowage solutions”, ambient lighting, and Bluetooth connectivity to allow for the use of personal headphones with a 17-inch 4K built-in touchscreen.Daniel Kerrison, vice-president of in-flight product at Flydubai, says: “The new business suite will take comfort on board to the next level. The increased height of the back-shell, a sliding suite door and direct aisle access for every passenger create a level of privacy never before seen on Boeing 737s.”The first aircraft to have the new Business Suite is expected to join the Flydubai fleet in November 2023. The new premium experience will be available on up to six aircraft by the first quarter of 2024 and will be scheduled on select longer flights around the Flydubai network.
The Business Suite, designed exclusively for single-aisle aircraft, is the latest evolution in Flydubai’s business class offering which will see ten suites introduced to a number of the carrier’s newest aircraft before the end of the year. Ghaith Al Ghaith, CEO at Flydubai, says: “Our business and product offerings have evolved from the initial no-frills model over the past 14 years to cater to the ever-growing needs of our customers and the markets we operate to.
“Today, we are proud to unveil a new premium product which rivals the business class experience offered by many airlines on wide-body aircraft. We will continue to invest in innovation to enhance the customer experience across our growing fleet.”Meanwhile, Saudi Arabian carrier Saudia recently unveiled its business seat at Arabian Travel Market in Dubai.
The Vantage SOLO suite will be fitted on the airline’s new Airbus A321 XLR aircraft and will provide “significantly more privacy” than previous business class seats, with a privacy shield around the back and an additional door at the aisle. The seats can also be reclined fully into bed mode and there is an 18-inch screen for movies.Saudia CEO, Captain Ibrahim Koshy, says: “At Saudia we are deeply committed to finding new and innovative ways to further enhance our renowned guest experience. We firmly believe that the Vantage SOLO suite represents the epitome of comfort, privacy and luxury. Our new business class offering is the embodiment of Saudia’s dedication to constantly evolving its products and services to deliver a superior customer journey underpinned by the very latest technological developments.”
The new Airbus A321 XLR aircraft will cover destinations across Europe, the Indian subcontinent and Africa including Milan, Barcelona, Brussels, Rome, the Maldives, and Dakar.
In addition to the launch of VantageSOLO suite, Saudia has announced its new economy class seat, the z400. The seat will feature a 13-inch screen and a generous seat recline.