It takes 17 hours and 25 minutes to get from Perth to London on Qantas’ direct flight. That’s a lot of movies, and not a lot of movement.
But as airlines continue to improve their cabins and service, those 17 hours could become a lot more pleasurable.
Exercise bikes and virtual reality relaxation services are on the top of Qantas passengers’ wish-lists for ultra long-haul flights, the Australian airline revealed today.
Passengers also want noise-cancelling headsets and inflight cafes, the research conducted by Sydney University’s Charles Perkins Centre also found.
These were the top five most frequent suggestions:
‘Sense of separation’ zones where passengers can zone out with virtual reality relaxation zones, mindfulness programs and broader inflight entertainment,
Wireless, noise cancelling headsets,
Spaces for gentle exercise and stretching, and exercise bikes,
Cabin design allowing for seat and non-seat spaces catering to comfort, entertainment, state of mind and dining needs,
And an inflight cafe with alcoholic and non-alcoholic drinks, snacks and healthy foods.
“Customers are sharing some incredibly imaginative ideas, which is an exciting challenge and helps us to think outside of the box to redefine the ultra-long-haul experience,” Qantas industrial designer David Caon said.
“Bringing some of these concepts to life will involve an entire rethink around how to be clever about use of all cabin space and what is practically possible but it may well involve incorporating design elements never before seen on commercial aircraft.”
Qantas international CEO Alison Webster also noted customers’ increasing demand for wellbeing services, space and movement facilities on flights.
“Our job now is to determine where the most demand is and create this cabin in a way that makes it both affordable for customers and commercially viable for the airline. Everything is on the table and we are excited about what innovations may come from this research.”
Currently Qantas offers stretch classes at its Perth Transit lounge for passengers before and after the long-haul flight, as well as outdoor spaces.
The menu was also crafted by chef Neil Perry based on research from Charles Perkins Centre and is designed to boost sleep and wakefulness for different points in the journey.
Caon said Qantas will continue to use the research and customer feedback to create new interiors and features.
Qantas will make an announcement on the improvement project, dubbed Project Sunrise, later this year.
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