Every victory for normal sized passengers in the battle against tight ‘efficient’ seating is important, and Air New Zealand has sprung its customers from the grip of heartless if not hipless bean counters in its soon to fly single aisle Airbus A320 NEO family jets.
While the original A320s were an improvement over the slightly narrower 737s offered by Boeing, that was in the late 80s and early 90s, when average adult sizes were not quite as large as those of today.
The jets stayed the same, but their customers became bigger.
As reported by the NZ Herald, and down to the last millimetre, the Kiwi flag carrier has chosen a UK seat maker, Acro, to give back some much needed space in the new tech NEO versions of the A320 family that it will begin putting into service in the near future.
This varies in extra width by one to three centimetres. When people are given bone pain by small seats, and next to no room to lower a tray table, even one centimetre too little space can make a trans Tasman crossing feel like the longest three and a half hours of your life. Or more so if the All Blacks or Auckland Warriors are on board, as sporting competition commuting by teams and armies of supporters has become such an important part of the traffic across ‘the Dutch’, make that ‘the Ditch.’
In this case, the biggest gains are also given to the middle seat in each triple seat, as compensation for being sandwiched between the persons on the aisle and the window.