Air New Zealand Reveals New 'Bunk Beds' In Economy Class

If you've been dreaming of a good night's sleep on a long-haul flight, this might just be the news you've been waiting for.

Air New Zealand has unveiled a groundbreaking new lie-flat prototype sleep product (read: bunk bed) for its economy class travellers -- and it'll send you straight to dreamland.

The Economy Skynest is the result of three years of Air New Zealand research and development, and was designed to make economy travel more bearable on long-haul flights.

The Economy Skynest is a pod of six lie-flat beds in the economy cabin, lit by dim purple "sleeping" lights, equipped with a pillow, blanket, sheets, privacy curtains and earplugs.



Most Of Our Favourite Sleep Positions On Planes Aren't Very Safe

Sleeping while flying in an plane is one of life’s greatest challenges.

Anthony Morris


You Should Not Be Able To Recline Your Seat On A Plane

When I first saw the viral video of an airline passenger having her reclined seat repeatedly punched by the man sitting behind her, I was shocked -- shocked that anyone could take the woman’s side.

The 'pod' is designed in a stacked bunk bed fashion measuring three beds high. Each bed will be about two metres in length and about 60 centimetres wide.

Air New Zealand operates some of the world's longest flights, including the upcoming Auckland to New York service, clocking 17 hours and 40 minutes one-way.  As such, the airline is committed to putting "more magic back into flying economy".

The Economy Skynest is a pod of six lie-flat beds in the economy cabin, lit by dim purple "sleeping" lights. Image: Supplied.

Air New Zealand Chief Marketing and Customer Officer Mike Tod said the airline is always working on ways to develop product innovations across all aircraft cabins.

"A clear pain point for economy travellers on long-haul flights is the inability to stretch out -- the development of the Economy Skynest is a direct response to that challenge," Tod said.

Good News


Up Up And A-Hay: Horse Flies First Class To California

A first-class passenger on a weekend flight to Ontario International Airport demonstrated what a good seat “neigh-bor” he could be.



Why Drinks Taste Different Up In The Air

Turns out there’s a reason why things taste different at 30,000 feet

The airline will make a final decision on whether to operate the Economy Skynest in 2021, after it assesses the performance of its debut year of its Auckland to New York direct service.

General Manager of Customer Experience Nikki Goodman said feedback from both cabin crew and customers has been "outstanding".

"We see a future flying experience where an Economy Class customer on long-haul flights would be able to book the Economy Skynest in addition to their Economy seat, get some quality rest and arrive at their destination ready to go," she said.

Skynest is designed in a bunk bed fashion measuring three beds high. Image: Supplied
The Economy Skynest is a pod of six lie-flat beds in the economy cabin, equipped with privacy curtains and earplugs. Image: Supplied.

The airline is looking to add features such as separate reading lights, personal device USB outlets and ventilation outlets.

Passengers will be able to go to a pod during the flight for an "allocated session".



Are You Up For The Longest Flight In The World?

His friends ask Duane Brown if he is nuts.

Byron Wilson


With Qantas Flying Non-Stop For 19 Hours, Here's A Reminder How Planes Stay In The Air

Now that Qantas has flown into the history books after completing a record 19-hour flight from New York to Sydney, aeronautical engineer Byron Wilson answers the question on everyone's lips.

But no word yet on what a good night's sleep will cost you -- Air New Zealand has not yet decided how to price this new comfort feature.

Head of Airline Programmes Kerry Reeves said the scale of the challenge in developing the Economy Skynest was immense, "but it was a prize worth chasing, and one that we think has the potential to be a game-changer for economy class travellers on all airlines around the world."