What’s Worse Than Flying Economy? Airlines Want to Find Out.

Think less of everything (including legroom) on international flights

(Photo: Swell Media / Getty Images)

No surprise: Flying might get more cramped and stressful on long flights.

According to travel site God Save the Points, airlines are attempting to create a cabin class “below” economy on long-haul flights.

So this isn’t even Basic Economy on a domestic route. It’s 10 seats abreast on an Airbus A350, which two airlines (Air Caraibes and French Bee) have already opted for in lieu of the usual nine. And the A350 is already 9.5 inches narrower than a Boeing 777, which currently also offers a 10-seat row. It may also mean — much like current Basic Economy — less legroom,  a lack of in-flight entertainment, inferior boarding privileges, fewer miles earned and fewer/no bags allowed.

This speculation came about after an interview between Runway Girl Network (RGN) and François Caudron, Airbus VP of Marketing, where Caudron suggested “[airlines] may want to have a cabin portion, just to have a product that allows us to compete with the long-haul, low-cost. And then I’m seeing in the mainline carriers, this is what we’re going to be seeing. The back of the cabin, or it’s a part of the economy cabin, ten-abreast, and then a nine-abreast, and then a premium economy, and then business.”

Fortunately for now, it appears that only the two low-cost French airlines are interested in creating yet another sub-class on a flight. Perhaps they should instead look to Delta, which recently announced they would actually be improving their economy experience on international flights, offering welcome cocktails, hot towel service and more dining options.

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