Wednesday, July 01, 2009

First Class?

So Helen Clark would fly first class internationally as a matter of course? How?

There are precious few airlines flying to NZ nowadays with first class. Maybe it is why Helen Clark so welcomed the arrival of Emirates, as it always has first class, usually of a high standard as well. However, it does indicate that even she wasn't willing to support the state nationalised carrier, as Air NZ abolished first class in 2005 in favour of the upgraded business class - Business Premier - which has better seats than the old first class.

Those with first class flying to NZ are:

Air Tahiti Nui: to Papeete with connections to LA, Tokyo and Paris. Recliner seats that lay horizontal (Air NZ Business Premier would be superior).
Emirates: to Sydney, Melbourne, Brisbane, Dubai and connections to Europe. Mostly now private mini-cabins with their own mini-bar.
Korean Air: to Seoul with connections to Europe . Recliner seats that lay horizontal.
Singapore Airlines: to Singapore with connections to Europe and Asia. Fully lie flat semi-cabins (and of course suites on A380s from Singapore to London).

So first class to Australia, Europe and select Asian destinations is possible, and even LA via Papeete, but basically NZ is not a wealthy market to fly into. Unlike the UK, where BA maintains four classes, and even business class outranks what you get in NZ in terms of airport side service.

For me, I really don't give a damn, what really matters is why travel at all. There are precious few reasons to travel as frequently as most ministers do.

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