Skift Travel News Blog

Short stories and posts about the daily news happenings around the travel industry.


IDEAS: In-Flight Entertainment Gets a 4K Upgrade

8 months ago

Panasonic Avionics has introduced a range of new 4K OLED monitors for First and Business Class cabins, with United having recently announced that they plan to install the system on select new long haul aircrafts beginning in 2025.

Credit: Panasonic Avionics

The new monitors, which form part of the Astrova In-flight entertainment (IFE) lineup, come in a choice of five sizes maxing out at 42 inches, and also feature spatial audio powered by Panasonic Avionics’ latest Bluetooth technology.

Credit: Panasonic Avionics

Passengers on aircraft equipped with the new system will also be provided with up to 100W of DC power at their seat through USB-C, along with LED accent lighting designed to enhance the passenger experience and optimize the cabin environment.

Credit: Panasonic Avionics

“Astrova is transforming the seat back into an easily configured, flexible and personalized digital channel that caters to the individual needs of each passenger, enabling airlines to engage with their customers in flight like never before,” said Andy Masson, vice president of product management at Panasonic Avionics.

At Skift, we are looking to unearth the most creative and forward-thinking innovations in travel through our Skift Ideas Franchise, which includes the Skift IDEA Awards, Skift Editorial Hub and the Skift Ideas Podcast.

You can listen and subscribe to the Skift Ideas Podcast through your favorite podcast app here.


IDEAS: flydubai Redesigns Their Single-Aisle Business Class Experience

10 months ago

flydubai has unveiled the latest evolution in its premium business class offering, ‘The Business suite’, which is set to be introduced on select flights within its network.

The Dubai-based carrier is the launch customer for this brand-new seat, having worked in close collaboration with Safran Seats, a leading manufacturer of aircraft seats and JPA Design, a design company operating in the transportation, interiors, and product design arenas.

Credit: flydubai

Announced at the 2023 Arabian Travel Market, the first aircraft featuring the new Business Suite is expected in November, with flydubai anticipating the new offering being available on up to six aircraft by the first quarter of 2024.

The new suites have been designed exclusively for single-aisle aircraft, and will allow direct aisle access for every passenger, providing guests the option to have a fully-closed suite experience or a more traditional open plan seat. The new pods will also feature discreet stowage solutions, ambient lighting and an increased on-board entertainment package.

“flydubai is committed to exceeding expectations. Our business and product offerings have evolved from the initial no-frills model over the past 14 years to cater to the ever-growing needs of our customers and the markets we operate to,” said Ghaith Al Ghaith, chief executive officer at flydubai.

“We have come a long way since the introduction of our first Business Class offering in 2013, which has served us well… we are proud to unveil a new premium product which rivals the Business Class experience offered by many airlines on wide-body aircraft. We will continue to invest in innovation to enhance the customer experience across our growing fleet.”

At the 2023 Skift IDEA Awards, we are looking for the projects defining the future of aviation, airlines, and the traveler experience.

If you have an exciting initiative to share, head over to the Skift IDEA Awards and start your submission today!


Airline Ticket Prices Are Fairer Indicator of Passenger Carbon Emissions Than Seat Size — Study

1 year ago

Premium, business or first-class seat are regarded as more harmful to the environment, because the passenger is taking up more space on the aircraft. Most countries tax them more, too.

But according to a new study, allocating passenger aircraft emissions using airfares rather than travel class gives a more accurate idea of individual contributions, prompting calls for a tax rethink.

Researchers at the UK’s University College London describe how including airfares in calculations shows which passengers contribute the most revenue to the airline operating the aircraft, thereby allowing the plane to fly.

Although premium seats are more expensive than economy, they found many late bookings in economy class, often made for business trips or by high income travelers, cost as much as, or more than, premium seats.

“The paper shows we should follow the money when calculating emissions of individual travelers, as it is revenue that decides whether an airline can operate a plane or not,” said lead author Dr. Stijn van Ewijk.

“Someone who has paid twice as much as a fellow traveler contributes twice as much to the revenue of the airline and should be allocated twice the emissions. The seat size of each travel class, which is currently used to allocate emissions, is only a rough approximation of how much passengers pay,” he said.

Implementing a tax that is proportionate to the price of the ticket could make the total costs of flying fairer, the study suggests. People buying the most expensive tickets would pay the highest tax, encouraging them to seek alternatives. It could increase estimates of corporate emissions because it allocates more to expensive late bookings, which are often made for business purposes.

The study used data from the Airline Origin Survey database.

Estimating passenger emissions from airfares supports equitable climate action” was published on Wednesday.