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I’ve travelled with a lot of airlines, but I have to say Air New Zealand has one of the most impressive economy class cabins I’ve ever flown in.
This year I’ve taken over 30 flights and I’m really becoming a bit of an airline geek these days. I’ve tried and tested the economy class on numerous long-haul airlines; Qantas, Malaysia Airlines, Virgin Atlantic, Etihad, Emirates, Qatar, British Airways, American Airlines, Delta, KLM…the list goes on.
Air New Zealand, however, stood out as one of the best experiences so far. I flew with them this summer when I decided to spend three months in the USA. I spotted a sale and ended up purchasing return tickets from London to Los Angeles for £586- that was a great deal considering the time of the year and the other prices available at the time.
The Air New Zealand route actually flies from London-Auckland via Los Angeles, but I just flew the LHR-LAX sector. The route is plied with a Boeing 777-300ER, which is configured with Economy, Economy Skycouch, Premium Economy (including Spaceseat) and Business Premier. Best of all, it’s direct and only takes 11 hours with no layover.
See what I thought in my Air New Zealand economy review…
The Economy cabin on the Air New Zealand 777-300 is pretty swish and new. I liked the pink lighting and it generally felt very welcoming. Each seat has a 10.6″ personal touch screen with on-demand movies, and you can create a playlist of your favourites to watch throughout the flight. What’s really fantastic is that I was able to watch entertainment from gate to gate, so there was no need to wait until the plane took off to start watching movies.
Well, well, well, what have we here? A plug socket? How exciting! As a blogger there’s nothing more exciting than finding a power point at your seat. I was able to charge my laptop and my phone throughout the flight so neither of them died on me. It’s really frustrating to arrive in a new destination with no juice on my iPhone!
I can’t really comment on the legroom or seat size too much because I’m 5’1″ and so I’m sure I could fit in the overhead locker if I tried!
The service on the flight was impeccable and I found the staff to be really chatty, smiley and friendly. I noticed there were quite a few male flight attendants on Air New Zealand- often I feel like it’s mostly women on other airlines. The best thing about the ANZ economy class is that you can see the dinner menu on your seatback TV screen, and in between meals you can order on-demand snacks right from the comfort of your seat.
Often I find myself feeling really peckish in between the mealtimes, so this is a great idea. There’s no need to press a call button or walk to the galley; I simply ordered a cup of tea and a biscuit from the screen, and it arrived almost immediately. Fantastic!
I’m really not a fan of airline meals (unless they’re Business Class meals!) but the Economy meals on Air New Zealand were really quite tasty and I didn’t leave any of it. For the outbound flight I chose a chicken korma curry served with basmati rice and garden peas, accompanied by a salad of cous cous and chick peas and a warm bread roll. The dessert consisted of honeycomb ice cream, plus some cheese and crackers. Yum!
I liked the way the meals were served in plastic containers instead of the usual foil trays, and even the plastic cutlery was made to look like silverware. My second meal of the flight was a chicken sandwich, accompanied by a fruit salad and scones with jam and clotted cream. I just wish other airlines would take a note out of Air New Zealand’s book and keep it simple!
On the return flight I chose a main meal of tomatoey chicken with pasta and green beans, served with a three bean salad. For breakfast I ate a cheese omelette with potatoes and tomato, accompanied by a fruit salad and yoghurt.
As usual with long haul flights I was given a headset, blanket and pillow.
I’m being honest here, I couldn’t really find any negatives on this flight at all. OK, I’ll deduct a point for not having Wi-Fi onboard. I would definitely fly with them again to Los Angeles if I can spot a good price!