The first of QantasLink's reconfigured Boeing 717 aircraft is now in service on selected flights to Canberra, offering in-flight entertainment for all passengers and a new regional business class product.
Pictured below, the leather seats in business class will give premium travellers more choice and flexibility, gradually replacing the existing all-economy layout on 717 routes to the nation's capital.
Though only one Boeing 717 aircraft has completed the reconfiguration process at this stage, four more birds are set to join the ranks – entering the fleet over the coming months to operate flights to Canberra from Sydney, Melbourne and Brisbane.
The 110-seat jet will provide wireless-based in-flight entertainment through the familiar Q Streaming service – with business class flyers to receive iPads, while passengers in economy will be provided with iPad minis.
As with the larger 737 aircraft, the 717 provides a 2-2 configuration in business, though has a slightly smaller economy cabin in a 2-3 layout:
If you're travelling in business class and need to sneak in a quick nap, consider row 3 – there's a bulkhead wall directly behind you, though you'll be closer to the economy cabin, which can be noisier on occasion.
When joined by a partner or colleague in economy, you'd be advised to opt for the A & C seats, avoiding an extra seatmate.
Passengers with seats in the front row of both cabins will be delighted to learn that their Q Streaming iPads (or iPad minis) can be mounted onto the bulkhead walls – making things easier at chow time.
On the Canberra routes, the 717 will eventually replace the remaining Boeing 737-400s, which are tipped to leave the fleet next year – though if you do happen to book a flight on this aircraft type, prepare for the journey by choosing the best available seat.
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