on air now

Economy passengers may soon be able to sleep in lie-flat bunks on Air New Zealand flights

Image: Air New Zealand

A ground-breaking new idea that could revolutionise the long haul economy flight experience may become a reality as soon as next year.

Air New Zealand, which is launching a new long-haul flight route from Auckland to New York City in October, has unveiled triple-decker bunk beds in its economy cabin.

Known as “Skynest” the pod of six lie-flat beds would be available for economy passengers to book, for a fee, for a few hours of shut-eye on the 17 hour and 40 minute flight.

Head of Airline Programmes at Air New Zealand, Kerry Reeves, said the idea is the result of three years of research.

“Our economy travellers are hard done by, sometimes, with the space we can afford to give them. We’ve been working a long time now to try and provide some options to give them a different experience on board,” he told 3AW’s Ross and John.

“To have it for the whole flight for one person probably isn’t economically viable for an economy passenger.

“Our crew on board those long haul flights generally sleep for three to four hours and that’s generally deemed to be adequate.”

The cost of renting the Skynest pods has not yet been announced. It is also unclear how many pods will be available on each aircraft.

Press PLAY below for more.