British Airways is seriously amping up the anticipation of a massive and eagerly awaited upgrade to its Club World business class seat which is expected to be unveiled in the next couple of months. The airline has just taken to Twitter to share a first look of the seat – or should that be a tantalising preview of the new seat’s armrest. It’s making us beg to see more.
— British Airways (@British_Airways) March 16, 2019
The first aircraft that will feature the new seat is an Airbus A350 – the first of which is expected to be delivered to British Airways in Q2 (probably in June or July). Instead of building on the current Club World ‘ying-yang’ seat which debuted in its current form back in 2016, British Airways has decided to modify an off the shelf seat which the airline’s chief executive Alex Cruz has said will be “BA-ified”.
There’s still no confirmation on what seat British Airways has chosen but our sources claim it is the VantageXL business class seat made by Northern Ireland-based Thomson Aerospace. The seat has been chosen by a number of airlines including SAS, South African Airways and Delta Air Lines, and also features on the Qantas Dreamliner fleet.
The seat can be heavily modified and there’s still the possibility that British Airways has gone down the same route as Delta by creating a fully enclosed private suite with a sliding door. So far, British Airways has only confirmed that the seat will be wider with direct aisle access for every passenger, gate-to-gate seatback entertainment, increased storage, and more privacy.
In the sneak peak Tweet, British Airways calls the seat “re-imagined” and we can immediately see a big upgrade on what materials have been used, with the armrest swaddled in a dark soft leather, white stitching and chrome accents. Expect to see more details released in the coming days and a big unveiling ceremony at some point very soon.
A second photo showed a new table release button, while a third depicted a female passenger snuggled up in the new White Company bedding. A final photo revealed what the seat cushion covering will look like.
By the end of 2019, the new seat will have been installed on a handful of brand new A350’s and a small number of retrofitted Boeing 777’s. British Airways will then face the challenge of not overpromising and under delivering like what happened to United with its Polaris biz class seat.
Mateusz Maszczynski honed his skills as an international flight attendant at the most prominent airline in the Middle East and has been flying throughout the COVID-19 pandemic for a well-known European airline. Matt is passionate about the aviation industry and has become an expert in passenger experience and human-centric stories. Always keeping an ear close to the ground, Matt's industry insights, analysis and news coverage is frequently relied upon by some of the biggest names in journalism.