A few weeks ago I headed over to Auckland for the Qatar Airways Inaugural event. In the weeks prior, I was tossing up with how I was going to fly over, and I had an interesting idea. Air New Zealand are phasing out their Premium Economy on the 777-300ER, and I hadn’t flown the product before, so I decided to try it before it’s gone.
I decided to pay for this ticket, and the price was quite good at the time. Air New Zealand is notorious for not releasing any award availability, and redeeming miles for this flight would have been terrible value anyway.
The Premium Economy Cabin consists of 44 seats, all with 8.6 inches of recline. The seats have a pitch of 42 and a width of 20.
The cabin is set in a 2-2-2 configuration, the seats on the side of the aircraft (A, B & J, K) are angled to face to the window while the middle seats face forward but are also angled to the window slightly.
The seats in front of you house the tray table, IFE screen, and power options. You’ll also notice the footwell at the bottom of the seats. If you’re on a long-haul flight, you’ll be given a cushion for your feet.
Each seat has in-seat and USB power.
The IFE screen is on a swivel and can be moved to your desired viewing angle, similar to Cathay First screens.
The side armrests can be lowered and risen, if you’re travelling and you have a spare seat next to you or as a couple, they are meant to be lowered, and the idea is you can stretch across them.
On these flights, a menu isn’t offered. The crew gave two options to choose from. The starter was made up of garlic bread, salmon and a chocolate cake, an interesting combination…
To drink, I had a Ginger Ale.
For the main, I had the fish dish which was cooked well and tasted great with the sauce.
There are two bathrooms for Premium Economy guests, both located at the rear of the cabin.
Interesting wallpaper in the bathroom.
As you can see, the cabin is quite spacious if you’re small, if you’re tall, the seats can be quite uncomfortable apparently.
Air New Zealand’s Premium Economy is a solid product. I do however prefer their newer seat found on the 787-9’s. This product was actually ‘revolutionary’ when it launched and it’s a shame to see it leave.