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Emirates unveils more spacious Business Class seats on its Boeing 777 aircraft

Emirates is unhappy after abruptly cancelling a flight at LHR airport.

Dubai, UAE, 5 March 2018 – Emirates has unveiled a brand new Business Class cabin and configuration on its Boeing 777-200LR aircraft, with new wider seats laid out in a 2-2-2 configuration for the first time.

The airline has invested over US$150 million to refurbish the 10 existing 777-200LR aircraft in its fleet.

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The newly refurbished Emirates 777-200LR aircraft is set in a two-class configuration which offers 38 Business Class seats and 264 seats in Economy Class.  While the Business Class seats are in the same design and shape of Emirates’ latest lie-flat seats, they are now two inches wider for a more comfortable journey. The seats retain the champagne coloured finish and diamond stitch pattern on the full leather cover, and the ergonomically designed headrest revealed on Emirates’ newest Boeing 777 in November.

Emirates unveils more spacious Business Class seats on its Boeing 777 aircraft

The Business Class seat has a pitch of 72 inches and moves into a fully flat sleeping position.  It also has touchscreen controls for the seat and inflight entertainment system, several personal lighting options, privacy panels between seats, a shoe stowage area, footrest and a personal mini-bar.

Emirates unveils more spacious Business Class seats on its Boeing 777 aircraft

Luxury and comfort are at the heart of Emirates’ product refresh as overhead bins in centre of the cabin have been removed for an airier and more spacious feel on board. The cabin boasts electronic windows and the largest personal in-flight entertainment (IFE) screens in Business Class at 23 inches wide.

Emirates unveils more spacious Business Class seats on its Boeing 777 aircraft

The cabin also features the Ghaf tree – considered the national tree of the United Arab Emirates, and now a signature design on the latest Emirates aircraft.

In addition, the new Business Class cabin features a social area – unique to the Boeing 777-200LR fleet. The mini lounge area features snacks such as crisps, sandwiches and fruit, as well as beverages for customers to help themselves to during the flight.

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He is an aviation journalist and the founder of Jetline Marvel. Dawal gained a comprehensive understanding of the commercial aviation industry.  He has worked in a range of roles for more than 9 years in the aviation and aerospace industry. He has written more than 1700 articles in the aerospace industry. When he was 19 years old, he received a national award for his general innovations and holds the patent. He completed two postgraduate degrees simultaneously, one in Aerospace and the other in Management. Additionally, he authored nearly six textbooks on aviation and aerospace tailored for students in various educational institutions. jetlinem4(at)gmail.com

Aviation

American Airlines Letter Sparks Outrage Over Flight Attendant Salary

American Airlines Launches 8 New Winter Routes to Latin America &Caribbean

An employment letter from American Airlines (AAL) has ignited a firestorm of controversy across social media platforms, shedding light on the stark reality of flight attendant salaries in the aviation industry.

Shared on Reddit and authenticated by the union representing American Airlines employees, the letter has drawn widespread attention for its revelation of starting salaries barely surpassing federal poverty levels.

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The actual letter AA gives new FAs when they move to NYC, Miami, Boston, Dallas etc.
byu/containment-failure inamericanairlines

Detailing the compensation package for new flight attendants, the letter discloses an hourly rate of $30.35 per flight hour, translating to an annual salary projection of $27,315 before incentives and taxes. This figure, notably below the poverty threshold for both individual and two-person households in 2024, has sparked outrage and disbelief among readers.

What further compounds the issue is the disclosure that flight attendants typically work between 65 to 85 flight hours each month, supplemented by an additional 50 hours dedicated to aircraft preparation before takeoff and after landing—tasks for which they receive no compensation.

This revelation underscores the significant gap between the demanding workload of flight attendants and the meager financial rewards they receive in return. The letter, designed for use in dealings with landlords and other service providers as proof of income, closes with a plea for understanding: “any courtesy you can provide would be appreciated.”

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This poignant appeal highlights the financial strain faced by many flight attendants who struggle to make ends meet on their current salaries. In response to these revelations, American Airlines flight attendants are mobilizing for action.

With negotiations underway for a new contract with the airline, which includes demands for higher pay, they are urging the White House to authorize their right to strike after a 30-day cooling-off period.

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Airlines

Flight Review: World’s longest flight in Premium Economy

Flight Review: World’s longest flight in Premium Economy

Welcome to a flight review on Singapore Airlines’ flagship Airbus A350-900ULR flight to New York’s John F Kennedy international airport. With a scheduled flight time of 18 Hours and 40 minutes, together with an average distance of 9,800 miles, this flight is so long that Singapore Airlines does not have a economy class cabin on it. This means that aircrafts which ply this route are specially configured, having only Premium Economy and Business class seats. This flight is also currently the world’s longest flight. 

Check-in

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I checked in at the mobile kiosk at Changi Airport Terminal 3. However, even though I was able to print out the baggage tags, I was not able to check-in my bags at the self check-in counter. Instead, I soon found out that travellers bound for the United States are supposed to proceed to the manual counters to check-in their baggage, due to the additional security measures imposed for flights bound to the United States. 
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Flight Review: World’s longest flight in Premium Economy


Today’s flight is onboard 9V-SGG, a 2018 built Airbus A350-900 ULR Aircraft, specially modified to fly this route. The flight time onboard this flight would be approximately 17 hours and 15 minutes, with the Airbus A350 flying over the Pacific Ocean. 

Flight Review: World’s longest flight in Premium Economy

We took off from Singapore Changi Airport Runway 20C and landed at JFK Airport Runway 22L.

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Aircraft TypeAirbus A350-900ULR 
Aircraft Registration 9V-SGG
Flight Distance 9067nm
V1/Rotation Speed158/159kts
Take off Weight 273,857kg 
Cruise Altitude 35,000ft, then up to 41,000ft 

Boarding Process

Due to the unique configuration of our aircraft for today, boarding took place relatively quickly. Passengers were called to board by their class of travel, together with the airline loyalty program. Boarding took place so fast that within 20 minutes, all of us were in our seats, ready for the long flight to New York. 

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Flight Review: World’s longest flight in Premium Economy

Seats

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The seats in Premium Economy are arranged in a 2-4-2 configuration, with the last 3 rows having a 1-4-1 configuration. 

Flight Review: World’s longest flight in Premium Economy

Meanwhile the seats in the business cabin are arranged in a 1-2-1 configuration, giving each seat a direct aisle access. 

Flight Review: World’s longest flight in Premium Economy

I am seated in Seat 40C, one of the 6 ‘solo’ seats on the Airbus A350, which means that I would not be having another seat beside me. Instead, what was in place of the other seat was a storage bin, which was rather helpful as I could easily store my carry-on bags right beside me, instead of in the overhead compartment. This also means that I would be able to retrieve any items in my carry on bags without requiring me to stand up. 

Flight Review: World’s longest flight in Premium Economy

The seats have a spacious width of 19.5 inches, offering a generous 38 inch of pitch, and offers a generous 8 inches of recline, resulting in a rather comfortable experience. There is a blanket and a pillow which could be found at every seat, and they were integral in ensuring that I had a comfortable journey onboard this ultra-long haul flight. 

The seats also came with a table lamp which is conveniently located at the left-hand of the seat, and was able to toggle between 3 different brightness settings. The tray tables are sufficiently big, which makes it easy for anyone who wishes to do some work onboard the aircraft. 

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The Flight 

Due to the slightly shorter flight time, we took off from Changi Airport in Singapore at a slightly later time of (time), so as to reach New York’s JFK airport on time. 

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Before take off, the cabin crew came around the cabin to offer each passenger a hot towel, a welcome gesture given the long flight. Furthermore, the cabin crew also came around confirming orders by passengers who have pre-booked their meals using the ‘Book the Cook’ option. Passengers could use the ‘Book the Cook’ option to pre-select the meals for the flight, and are offered a wider range of food choices, with over 20 different food choices from different cuisines being offered. This is a step up from the usual menu choices, where passengers are limited to the 2 menus offered onboard the flight per meal. 

Flight Review: World’s longest flight in Premium Economy


Right after takeoff, we were served lunch, which consisted of either Pork Fricasse with Lentils or Thai Braised Beef Noodles. For me, since I used the ‘Book the Cook’ option, I got a Sake Teriyaki Set, which consisted of two pieces of salmon, with rice marinated in Japanese Teriyaki sauce. The dessert, which was Chocolate Orange Cake, was amazing, and ended the lunch service on a high note. 

Flight Review: World’s longest flight in Premium Economy

Singapore Airlines recently revamped their inflight menu services for Premium Economy, offering 175 new food items and an improved porcelain dishware. This revamp successfully managed to elevate the inflight dining experience, with the porcelain dishware and Champagne served shortly after takeoff giving a more ‘Premium’ feel for the in-flight experience. 

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After the lunch service, the crew dimmed the lights to allow us as passengers to get some well needed shut-eye. One of the unique features of the Airbus A350 is it’s Mood Lighting, which enabled the cabin crews to choose from multiple colour tones to encourage passengers to sleep.

Flight Review: World’s longest flight in Premium Economy


Amenity kits were available upon request. The amenity kit is also part of the Singapore Airlines Premium Economy service revamp. Consisting of a eye mask, lip balm and disposable slippers, the amenity kit was a collaboration between Singapore Airlines and Out of the Woods. The amenity bag is made with an eco-friendly, innovative Kraft paper fabric. 

Flight Review: World’s longest flight in Premium Economy

The shut-eye period is when the features of the Premium Economy Seat really stood out. With a generous recline angle of 8 inches, the seat proved to be well designed for everyone to get a significant amount of shut-eye onboard this ultra-long haul flight. Furthermore, there are two USB power outlets, and a power plug outlet should you wish to charge your electronic devices. 

After approximately 8 hours at 10pm Singapore Time, we were woken up for dinner. Once again, I pre booked a meal of Roasted Chicken Garlic Veloute Sauce through Book the Cook. The chicken and potato were well seasoned, and was served with a side of Citrus Tart and a salad. 

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Flight Review: World’s longest flight in Premium Economy


Throughout the flight, there were various snacks available, ranging from cereal bars, peas and crackers, muffins, KitKats and even Instant Noodles. After the lunch service, the crew quickly set up a cart in the galley, where passengers could go and grab the snacks which they desired.

Flight Review: World’s longest flight in Premium Economy

Instant Noodles were available on demand. The crew were also proactive in walking through the galley, serving drinks and snacks when requested. I got a turkey sandwich, which was rather filling and was an unexpected addition as I expected only basic snacks to be available. 

Flight Review: World’s longest flight in Premium Economy

Approximately 2 hours before the flight landed in New York, we were served a warm Mushroom Pizza as a pre-landing snack. Given that we were about to land in New York at evening time, this snack was appropriate to be served at this hour. Not long after, we soon started our descent into New York’s John F Kennedy International Airport. 

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About an hour and a half before landing, we were served a pre-landing snack of a Pizza. Well, it was definitely not the best pizza I had, but definitely not the worst. I’ll leave it for you to judge the pizza 🙂 

Flight Review: World’s longest flight in Premium Economy


Soon, our time on the World’s longest flight came to an end, as we made our approach towards New York. Our flight path brought us on a rather scenic view of New York City. What an amazing way to start my vacation in New York! 

Flight Review: World’s longest flight in Premium Economy

In flight entertainment

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The inflight entertainment has a sufficient amount of movies and TV shows, definitely sufficient to keep you entertained for the entire 18 hours of the flight. The screen was also rather responsive, and the brightness of the screen could also be modified according to personal preference. The screens were a staggering 13.3 inch, and could also be controlled with a remote control. Furthermore, Noise Cancelling Headsets were offered by Singapore Airlines, for the passengers to use to watch their movies in flight. This is definitely an upgrade from what is offered in their Economy Class Cabins, where passengers would only have a wired earpiece.

Singapore Airlines offers an extensive Inflight entertainment selection, with the latest movies and television shows which are offered onboard. Furthermore, the airline also offers free inflight WiFi to its customers who are Krisflyer members, the loyalty program of Singapore Airlines. This made the ultra-long haul journey rather bearable as passengers were now able to utilise the internet to access their emails, or even use their social media applications to stay in contact with their loved ones. For me, as an Avgeek, I used the Inflight WiFi to do some self-tracking on the FlightRadar24 application. 

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Flight Review: World’s longest flight in Premium Economy

One good feature of the flight was definitely the access to the in-flight map, together with a birds eye view of the places we were flying over. Singapore Airlines has this unique feature in their in-flight map, where we are able to see the ‘Heads Up Display’ from the comfort of our own screens. Furthermore, the Heads Up Display contains information about our flight, such as the Altitude and Airspeed. 

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Flight Review: World’s longest flight in Premium Economy

Cabin Service 

The immaculate cabin service would definitely be deserving of a shoutout from me — The crews were highly attentive and took initiative in offering passengers drinks. Multiple times through the flight, the crews could be seen walking down the aisle with a tray of water, apple and orange juice, offering it to any passengers who requested it. Furthermore, the crews were highly professional and warm, greeting each passenger by their surnames and even taking time to confirm the pre-booked orders with the passengers. 

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And with that, the time passed in a blink of an eye on the world’s longest flight. This flight certainly felt way quicker than some of the medium/long haul flights which I flew before. Would I do it again? Definitely! 

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Aerospace

China Developing Comac C939 Wide Body Aircraft to Compete with A350 and B777

China Developing Comac C939 Wide Body Aircraft to Compete with A350 and B777


China’s Comac aircraft company is currently underway with the development of its own wide-body aircraft, the C939, positioned to compete with industry stalwarts like the Boeing 787 and Airbus A350 in the future. This strategic move by Comac involves crafting the next iteration with enhanced capacity and extended range capabilities, marking a significant leap forward in technological advancement compared to the current C919 aircraft.

Air China has inked a substantial deal worth a staggering $10.8 billion, based on list prices, to acquire 100 Comac C919 jets, signaling a strong vote of confidence in the domestic challenger to aerospace giants Airbus and Boeing.

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China Comac C919 Total Order

With both China Southern and Air China combining orders for nearly 200 aircraft, the prospects for the new C919 aircraft appear increasingly promising for future fleet growth. To date, Comac has garnered orders for nearly 1,100 aircraft.

China is contemplating the development of another wide-body aircraft, the C939, poised to significantly bolster the aerospace industry in China.

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COMAC has initiated work on the C939, a new wide-body airliner. While design concepts have been formulated, it will still take several years before a prototype materializes, according to reports from the South China Morning Post, citing anonymous sources.

Initially intended to be a joint venture with Russia, plans were halted due to Russia’s decision to safeguard its copyrights and technological advancements within its borders. Consequently, collaboration between China and Russia on aircraft development was discontinued. Sources suggest that China is vigorously pursuing new avenues for the independent development of its own wide-body aircraft, crucial for accommodating larger passenger capacities and extended flight ranges.

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Comac C939 competes with Boeing 777 and A350

Information regarding the program remains limited. COMAC has refrained from commenting on the development of the new aircraft type, stating that official announcements will be made in due course. Nevertheless, the C939 could potentially accommodate up to 390 passengers, positioning it to compete with the largest Boeing 777 and Airbus A350 aircraft.

In addition to the prospective C939, COMAC is already advancing with the development of another widebody aircraft, known as the C929. This aircraft is poised to rival the Boeing 787 and Airbus A330, boasting 280 seats and a range approaching 6,500 nautical miles.

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Since obtaining certification in late 2022, the COMAC C919 has been operational, accumulating nearly 1,000 firm orders, predominantly from Chinese-owned airlines and leasing companies.

With multiple widebody aircraft in the pipeline, COMAC stands to achieve parity with the two leading international aircraft manufacturers. Boeing, with its 777 and 787 models, and Airbus, with the A330neo and A350, both have a comparable range of offerings. However, Boeing’s aircraft are encountering delays and production challenges despite substantial orders, while the A350 is performing commendably, though the A330neo’s order intake has not met initial projections.

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How much does C919 cost?

China is under pressure to fulfill the current orders for the C919 aircraft, prompting plans to expand production facilities across various regions within the country. The aim is to ramp up production capacity for C919 planes to 150 aircraft annually over the next five years. The latest reports indicate that the C919 is priced around $99 million, comparable to the price of Boeing 737 Max and Airbus A320 aircraft, with expectations for further price reductions in the future.

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While the C919 has yet to be certified in major aviation markets outside of China, only four have been delivered thus far. In the long term, COMAC’s widebody aircraft will vie for global competitiveness. One potential benefit of COMAC aircraft could be in reducing China’s reliance on Western aircraft manufacturers. However, this shift won’t happen immediately; the current delivery rate of four aircraft in nearly 18 months is not sustainable, and both Airbus and Boeing have established manufacturing facilities in China to cater to its sizable market.

Nevertheless, assuming COMAC addresses the issues impeding deliveries, there’s a plausible scenario where the manufacturer assumes a significant role, particularly as China’s aviation market continues to expand.

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As the C939 progresses through its development stages, more details are expected to emerge. Comparisons between official specifications of the C929 and C939 will be noteworthy, as will the initial orders for each aircraft type. However, it’s anticipated that neither will undergo test flights or enter into service for several years.

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