AirAsia X explores 'bed-like' economy seats

AirAsia X explores 'bed-like' economy seats

Lie-flat beds may no longer be the exclusive domain of business class if AirAsia X has its way.

The low-cost Malaysian airline is looking at how three economy seats can be converted into a 'bed-like experience' and sold to a single traveller.

It's a step beyond Air New Zealand's Skycouch (below), which the Kiwi carriers has already licensed to Taiwan's China Airlines and Brazil's Azul.

“While the Skycouch model spurred the thinking about how do you modify the seats, I think there are drawbacks to the specific Skycouch model, certainly when it comes to how much weight you put on the system,” says AirAsia X CEO Azran Osman Rani told Future Travel Experience.

“The next step is can we enhance a simple three-seat configuration to make it even more comfortable to the owner of those three seats by giving it a bed-like experience?" Osman Rani ponders.

“We think there are other solutions that give you a more comfortable experience leveraging on that empty space that would otherwise be for where your legs are, which you don’t need when you’re lying down flat without, sort of, that extra extension."

"It’s been an idea that we’re developing; we’ll see how long it’ll take us to get there.”

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David Flynn
David Flynn is the editor of Australian Business Traveller and a bit of a travel tragic with a weakness for good coffee, shopping and lychee martinis.
 

10 comments

  • watson374

    watson374

    23 Jan, 2015 12:57 am

    Knowing LCCs like AirAsia X, I'm willing to bet that the bed-like mode won't stay up without a manual lock activated by the crew that is subject to a hefty surcharge. It also offers an opportunity to upsell their blankets, pillows and eyeshades!

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  • Bizflyer

    Bizflyer

    23 Jan, 2015 03:21 am

    Knowing air asia this is true but it would be good to see if it arrives 

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  • aviation

    aviation

    23 Jan, 2015 08:31 am

    "I think there are drawbacks to the specific Skycouch model, certainly when it comes to how much weight you put on the system"

    The Skycouch flaps that fold up collectively can hold 150kg! I don't think there is any issue when it comes to weight.

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  • domesticgoddess

    domesticgoddess

    23 Jan, 2015 11:29 am

    Excellent point. And given the width of the flap (and the position of the back of the seat in front), you'd have to assume that anyone lying on a SkyCouch would have at least part of their body on the actual seats - which must be able to take at least 450kg (ie 3 seats x 150kg each).

    Just how heavy are Air Asia customers? :p

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  • riley

    riley

    23 Jan, 2015 02:47 pm

    Think fast food frequenters, once a year holiday to SE Asia, hefty sense of entitlement about what a no frills fare should entail, unrealistic expectations of carry on allowances... 150kg might be a squeeze!

    It's enough to motivate me to pay more for full service carriers!

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  • watson374

    watson374

    23 Jan, 2015 04:00 pm

    Once a year holiday to Kuta and Seminyak, I should say!

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  • riley

    riley

    23 Jan, 2015 04:03 pm

    Yep and straight off that plane to potato head, no time to waste when trying to feature on "the bali bible!"

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  • watson374

    watson374

    23 Jan, 2015 04:13 pm

    Don't forget to pick up a crate of Bintang!

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  • Broderick Boyd

    brobro

    23 Jan, 2015 11:08 am

    Great idea but being a LCC I could only assume after a few months the product will be in a poor state.

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  • Serg

    Serg

    28 Jan, 2015 09:33 pm

    I love to see scycouch on each and every airline. It means choice that does not exist right now.

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26 May, 2019 11:26 pm

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