For those who have dreamed of having their own “nest” mid-flight, your lie-flat dreams could come true as Air New Zealand announced today a new prototype sleep product for economy travelers.
As you can imagine, Air New Zealand operates some really long flights, including plans to launch an Auckland to Newark flight later this year that will make it the 5th longest flight in the world.
And if you’ve ever spent ~17+ hours on a plane in economy, you’re aware of how brutal it can be.
Well, Air New Zealand has the answer…the Skynest! Each Air New Zealand “Skynest” will consist of six lie-flat sleep pods and have three levels.
Each pod will be approximately 200cm (~78 inches / 6 ft, 6 inches) long, and approximately 58cm (~23 inches / 1 ft, 11 inches) wide.
They will all include a full-size pillow, sheets, blanket, and ear plugs, along with privacy curtains and mood lighting designed for your optimal comfort.
Here is the video that Air New Zealand released today:
SO HOW DO I BOOK IT?
As you can see, it appears these bunk beds would be integrated into the main cabin and located at the back of the cabin. However, this is the prototype so that is not written in stone.
The one aspect that has piqued my curiosity is how to book these bunks. I am only making assumptions based off the video but it appears that these are actual beds (and not seats), so you presumably wouldn’t be booking a Skynest for the entire flight.
Given this assumption, you would probably buy a pod for some portion of the flight. So will they sell it by the minute? Hour? Intervals? Is it the flight attendants role to awaken you when your time limit has expired? How much will it cost? etc.
BEFORE YOU ROLL YOUR EYES…
I think it’s worth noting that Air New Zealand did introduce the Skycouch which is a row of three Economy seats that convert into a flat, flexible surface for rest and relaxation and is installed on their Boeing 777 and 787-9 Dreamliners.
However, the biggest drawback to the Skycouch is the size — it’s only 124 cm (~49 inches / 5 ft, 1 inch) which could be a challenging space for most people to obtain proper sleep.
Air New Zealand will not make a decision on whether to install these units until after assessing the performance of the first year of Auckland (AKL) to Newark (EWR) operations.
Given the AKL-EWR flight does not commence until October 2020, don’t expect to be able to book these anytime soon.
While I think this is a novel idea, I certainly have a lot of questions including the ones listed above.
But I’m curious what you think…
What do you think about this concept? Would you book the Skynest if you were on a longhaul Air New Zealand flight? What would be a good price for you…$1 per minute? Would you pay $100 for 3 hours? $500 for the entire flight?