The announcement was made at TRENZ, New Zealand’s largest international tourist industry event, when a real-life Skynest experience was available for the first time.
Skynest, according to Air New Zealand Chief Customer and Sales Officer Leanne Geraghty, will be a game changer, adding greater flexibility to the economy travel experience.
“Throughout our 83-year history, we have been committed to innovation and pushing the boundaries of what is possible.” SkyNest is the most recent example, and we’re thrilled to be pioneering this world-first cabin innovation. “SkyNest has captivated a global audience. Several awards have already recognised its originality, the most recent being a finalist in the Crystal Cabin awards. We’re thrilled that our customers are as enthusiastic about this innovation as we are. Our five-year, 170,000-hour research and design process has resulted in a product that will change the in-flight experience for Economy customers.
Skynet will be included on ultra-long-distance flights.
“We’re excited to announce that our innovative Economy Skynest will be available on ultra-long-haul flights beginning with the popular Auckland – New York and Auckland – Chicago routes.” “North America is the ideal market for Skynest because it has a premium segment that values comfort and sleep during long-haul travel. “Skynet provides a new and novel option for passengers to relax and recharge on our ultra-long-range flights to places such as New York and Chicago, making their journey with us even more delightful. By launching Skynest on these routes, we are putting our commitment to delivering choice and the best possible experience for our customers into action, as well as continuing to innovate and lead the way in the aviation industry, into action.
“As a proudly New Zealand company, we are thrilled to announce that Skynest will be designed and installed in Aotearoa. “While our total 787 retrofits will take place offshore in the best Boeing facilities, SkyNest will be developed in New Zealand by our top engineers and designers, utilising cutting-edge technology and design.
The Skynest will be a six-pod sleep zone with sessions for economy travellers to lie down when travelling long distances. It will be accessible beginning in September 2024.
Each pod will have a full-size pillow, sheets and blanket, ear plugs, a separate reading light, a USB outlet for personal devices, a ventilation outlet, and rest lighting.
Families travelling on the same ticket can schedule a session for each passenger, subject to availability. Skynest allows economy customers to sleep down and recover during longer flights.
The Skynest will be placed between Premium Economy and Economy. Each pod will have its seatbelt to guarantee passengers can wear their seatbelts and remain in the pod if the seat belt sign comes on during turbulence. The bedding will be changed between sessions, with a 30-minute transition period permitted. At the end of each session, the lights will gradually turn on, and any passengers who fall asleep will be respectfully awakened.
“We’re still working out the specifics of how the booking process will work, and we haven’t decided on a price yet.” At this point, the 4-hour period will cost between $400 and $600.”