Premium Economy. Why?

Discussion in 'Open Discussion' started by wilco, Dec 5, 2011.

  1. wilco

    wilco Guest

    #1 wilco, Dec 5, 2011
    Last edited by a moderator: Dec 5, 2011
    What are peoples thoughts of Premium Economy??

    Ive flown BA and QF and think that its kind of OK, but definitely not worth the prices being charged. What do people think would be a fair price to pay for PE?

    I also think its strange (ie: stupid) that F is being pulled from the fleets and PE installed, meaning that airlines went from a 3 class (F,J,Y) to 4 class (F,J,W,Y) and back to 3 class (J,W,Y).

    Why go to all that expense, when all you had to do was "reposition" the cabins in the market, by turning F into J, J into W and Y, well we all know nothing ever happens to Y!

    Thoughts?
     
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  2. harvyk

    harvyk Senior Member

    Apr 15, 2009
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    Given that both F and J have been getting increasingly more expensive for the airlines to operate over the years I expect it's a way of removing F by stealth, and then calling J service levels as "first class" in the future. Just think of "BusinessFirst" which I believe both AN and QF had when dom F disappeared. It was a name for business class which gave the impression First still existed.

    I expect what is now J will be called F in the future, and what is now Y+ will be called J in the future. Thus leaving 3 classes (Eccon \ Business \ First), but at a significantly reduced cost to the airlines because First doesn't have to be personal suites to compete and Business doesn't need to be flat beds to compete.
     
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  3. oz_mark

    oz_mark Enthusiast

    Jun 30, 2002
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    I think the primary reason for Y+ coming into being was the increasing gap between Y and J. Some people want something better than Y, but can't afford what J has become, with beds and all. It is just filling a gap in the market,
     
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  4. simongr

    simongr Enthusiast

    Jul 10, 2006
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    whY has stood still (or gone backwards) in terms of leg room, food etc. whilst J has gone bigger and better. At the same time F has gone betterer again. I don't think Y+ will become the new J. Personally if someone tried to sell me on Y+ as an acceptable class of travel for business travel (int'l medim to long haul) I would be finding another employer or airline.

    Personally I would like to fly Y+ for leisure trips but if I can find a low end J at a reasonable price then I would rather fly that and forego status/points (though I am intending to fly *class on JQ next year).
     
  5. Demented Freak

    Demented Freak Junior Member

    Aug 25, 2011
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    I'm not rolling in it so I can't afford to fly J everytime I fly long haul, but to be frank I'm 6ft and the wrong side of 100kg, so the extra couple of inches you get in Y+ makes a big difference to flying comfort for me.
     
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  6. wilco

    wilco Guest

    I agree that Y hasn't changed much and that J has become better and better , but I don't think that F has really moved all that much, because I dont think it has anywhere to move to. Sure, you now get a suite, but in terms of service, how much better it can get?. Add the new SQ business class into the mix and its hard to justify anyone needing anything more than that. I think that for all intents and purposes J (on most airlines) has made F as we know it, redundant.

    As for PE, many airlines still don't offer it, SQ, CX and the ME carriers being the main ones ( I know CX is introducing it). I Know its been hugely successful for QF and BA, but for mine, I just dont see why. I think the product is inadequate given the prices being charged, with QF wanting $4000 to LHR when for only a little bit more, you can get an average J seat on JL or *alliance (LH, SK, TG, LX etc)

    I really like the idea of NZ's "cuddle class". I think its a great concept. If your lucky to buy an upgrade at the airport, it turns out to be the cheapest bed in the sky and even it bought at the full going rate, is still better value than QF's or their own PE.

    BA offer decent $500 upgrades to PE, but having done it a few times, I wont do it again unless its the new PE that is only on the 77W. Their seats are hard and uncomfortable and you get the same catering as Y. At least QF has better service in their PE cabin.

    What I currently do is buy 2 Y seats, which only costs you roughly 1.5 times as much, because you dont pay the taxes on the second seat, and select the A and C seats. Sometimes QF is nice enough to block the B seat meaning on flights to LHR, $3k gets me a decent rest, that you could only dream of getting in PE at $4K. And you earn double points and SC's to boot.

    Recently on BA15, the flight was oversold and they wanted to upgrade me to PE so that my 2 Y seats could be used for other passengers. I declined the offer but as they were so desperate, I ended up in J.

    Domestically, I do the same thing, as 2x Red-e-deals are 1/4 the price of J for roughly the same space and double points and SC's.

    But do you pay for it?? Do you feel those extra few inches are worth double the price??
     
  7. notzac

    notzac Established Member

    Oct 6, 2008
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    QF whY+ is overpriced for what you get (especially with the downgrades in F&B, compared to what it was like when whY+ was introduced). VA whY+ is about on the money for me - right price, right amenities and service.
     
  8. MEL_Traveller

    MEL_Traveller Enthusiast

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    I don't see there is any danger in current business class being called first at any time... most companies will only allow travel in business class, hence the name will have to stick.

    we are already seeing improvements in premium economy... Turkish airlines has gone to 46 inch pitch... same product as cx regional business class in terms of space. the new Cathay premium iirc will only be 6 across on their a330s... using the same regional business seats theynhave now... so competition is hitting up for that.I think other carriers will follow in the years to come.
     
  9. richie9x

    richie9x Active Member

    May 18, 2011
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    One of the main benefits of premium economy is to get around corporate travel policies. Many companies have an economy only travel policy or some variation. As premium economy is still 'economy', employees who have to work under these policies can book a premium economy fare.
     
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  10. Per_Travels

    Per_Travels Member

    May 20, 2011
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    "Personally if someone tried to sell me on Y+ as an acceptable class of travel for business travel (int'l medim to long haul) I would be finding another employer or airline"

    Agreed - I tried Y+ a couple of years ago (SIN-LHR) and thought it was rubbish - overpriced and the seat is barely an improvement on Y.

    "we are already seeing improvements in premium economy... Turkish airlines has gone to 46 inch pitch... same product as cx regional business class in terms of space. the new Cathay premium iirc will only be 6 across on their a330s... using the same regional business seats theynhave now... so competition is hitting up for that.I think other carriers will follow in the years to come".

    Will be interesting to see how this trend continues. To my mind Y+ hasn't filled the obvious gap between Y and J. Y+ is to close to Y and J is to close to F
     
  11. GCC

    GCC Active Member

    Feb 2, 2010
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    The last time I actually flew in the QF Y+ cabin it was a packed plane SING - SYD and I was very underwhelmed by food service and comfort.

    There is another angle to Y+, especially if you can get a QF y+ seat at a sale price (say 3.5k SYD - LHR) return. You have a better prospect of an upgrade to J than someone with the same status on any Y fare, and on that route for eg. it is 60k less points to upgrade rather than 96k from Y - J .

    So I buy Y+ to fly J seat, and I find that for me it hits a "sweet spot" of cash plus points redeemed + points / SC's earned. Since I made WP I have a 100% hit rate for Y+ - J points upgrades.
     
  12. wilco

    wilco Guest

    I agree but hope airlines don't attempt to fill the gap between Y+ and J with Y++ or J-. I think 4 cabins is more than enough.....
     
  13. Alanslegal

    Alanslegal Senior Member

    Jun 22, 2007
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    Y+ is to me a marketing gimmick that is to lure passengers who can't afford to stump the extra cash to go J but are too precious to fly in actual Y. I personally would not ever pay for Y+ for medium-long haul as I find it resembles too much of Y and is nowhere near J.

    For example, a SYD-SIN QF award costs 30K for Y, 45K for Y+, 60K for J. In my opinion, it should be valued more like 30K for Y, 35K for Y+, 60K for J.
     
  14. docjames

    docjames Senior Member

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    IMO, QF Y+ is worth it on sale, but the value is poor when at "RRP". I'd go Y+ on sale, or Y if I coudn't get a decent Y+ price.

    Y+ on BA seems far from worth it. It's basically an economy seat with legroom. I wouldnt waste the money in that situation.

    I've had only good experiences when flying Y+ (incuding one upgrade to J, and one J seat with Y+ service).

    YMMV.
     
  15. wilco

    wilco Guest

    J seat with Y+ service is great, but it only exists until all the 4 class aircraft are reconfigured back to 3. However, that is the perfect scenario for me. A great seat/bed with not so fancy, but more than adequate catering, for a reasonable price. That is something I would absolutely pay for!!

    RedRoo and Qantas, take note!!
     
  16. docjames

    docjames Senior Member

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    True, although having "stepped-down" to true Y+ seating on the way back from LHR (after scoring J upgrade on the way over), we werent disappointed - it was worth the price (on sale).
     
  17. MEL_Traveller

    MEL_Traveller Enthusiast

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    true... except back in the days when jetstar was earning points for star class... the ONLY option for qf points ex Mel to bkk or dps was in Y+ (going via syd for an extra 3 hours just wasn't worth it... not so anymore now that I have jumped alliances and can fly sq or TG ex Mel)
     
  18. harvyk

    harvyk Senior Member

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    There is actually a train of thought out there in the industry where classes as we know it are going out the window. Where a basic fare from A to B will cost $X, and then you add on additional amount to the base fare to add features as desired. So for example a person would would want to sleep the entire trip could purchase a skybed upgrade to the base fare, but wouldn't get the typical J class trimmings (or any additional trimmings at all). We're sort of seeing this now with some LCC's and even some "full service" airlines like AirNZ who have unbundled things into 4 basic packages each one with additional features (eg base fare gives you nothing but a seat, top fare gives you seat + avod + movies + lounge etc...)
     
  19. wilco

    wilco Guest

    Not a bad concept really...... now if only QF had the balls like it did in 1979, to introduce something as radical as this, they just might pull themselves out of the very deep hole they find themselves in.
     
  20. simongr

    simongr Enthusiast

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    Not sure I would like this at all - too much complexity and agonising and then changing one's mind. I also think that on a lot of levels the consumer will lose out - the full service product will be more expensive than the current full service model (cf to JQ and the price difference between *Class and Business Max) and due to the complexity people will default to the full service model and just end up paying more. Add in fights at check in because people claim they paid for certain things and didnt get them or between husband and wife when she realises he didnt pay for food for the kids but paid for booze... I wont fly NZ for this reason. When I fly in J I want to fly in J I don't want to fly in one flavour of J out of many flavours on board...
     

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