There was certainly a lot of groaning and grumbling going on last week after Airbus unveiled new seat configurations.
Perhaps the biggest groan came with its plans for an 11-abreast A380. As you can see from the photos linked here, anyone who gets stuck with a window seat is in for a very long and uncomfortable trip with your legs crossed.
But while most people focused on the tight squeeze that would come with this seating configuration, something else got my attention.
The 11-abreast A380.
Almost every airline that operates the A380 is having trouble filling it. In fact, most A380’s are flying at well below their intended capacity. The A380 is just too big to fill and too expensive to operate.
So why would Airbus think adding even more seats to the airplane would be a good idea?
Sure, Airbus can hope to sell a few more A380s by promising lower seat mile costs with this configuration. But that only works if all the seats are filled.
Gone are the days when Airbus touted the A380 as a luxury palace in the sky where passengers could roam in spacious lounges. Desperate times— desperate measures.