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Cathay Pacific takes delivery of first aircraft with new Premium Economy product and long-haul Economy Class seats

  Cathay Pacific Airways has taken delivery of a new Boeing 777-300ER that is the first aircraft to feature its Premium Economy Class product and new long-haul Economy Class seats. The aircraft – the airline’s 25th 777-300ER – arrived at Hong Kong International Airport yesterday evening (26 February). At the same, the airline also received its fifth Boeing 747-8F from the manufacturer.

Speaking at the delivery ceremony at the Boeing factory in Seattle, Cathay Pacific Chief Operating Officer Ivan Chu said: “This is an important development for Cathay Pacific – another big step in our commitment to provide outstanding products and services to our passengers. We’re confident that both these new products will be winners, especially when combined with the famous Cathay Pacific service.”

Cathay Pacific’s Premium Economy Class

As well as introducing a totally new seat and entertainment system, Cathay Pacific has designed the entire customer experience to be more special for its new Premium Economy Class passengers.

To begin with, the new Premium Economy experience features a quieter, more spacious cabin than the traditional Economy Class with between 26 and 34 seats per aircraft. The seat pitch is 38 inches – six inches more than Economy Class – and the seat itself is wider and has a bigger recline. It has a large meal table, cocktail table, footrest, a 10.6-inch personal television, an in-seat power outlet, a multi-port connector for personal devices and extra personal stowage space.

Complementing these features, passengers will also benefit from:

On the ground:

  • Priority check-in at dedicated counters and priority boarding before Economy Class passengers.
  • An increase in baggage allowance from 20kg to 25kg (weight system) or two pieces of baggage from 23kg to 25kg each (piece system).

In the air:

  • Premium Economy Class seats offer a higher level of comfort with more living space in a separate cabin before the Economy Class zone.
  • Passengers will receive an environmentally friendly amenity kit with dental kit, socks, eyeshade and earplugs for use during their journey.
  • Larger pillows and noise-cancelling headsets will be provided to enhance the onboard experience.
  • Premium Economy passengers will be welcomed aboard with juice and champagne, and enjoy an enhanced onboard meal selection.
  • Each passenger will also receive a personal bottle of water and additional snack choices to include more fresh fruit, an energy bar and dessert.

Passengers can book the Premium Economy seats for flights departing from 1 April onwards which will initially be featured on some of the selected flights on the Sydney (CX101/100), Toronto (CX826/825/828/829), Vancouver (CX888/889), and New York (CX830/831/ 840/841/888/889) routes. In May, Premium Economy will be featured on some of the selected flights on the London route (CX252/255). As the number of aircraft fitted with these new cabins increases, priority will be given to achieving daily availability on these routes.

Additional markets will come online later in the year including Adelaide, Los Angeles, Melbourne and San Francisco in August, Frankfurt in September and Brisbane and Mumbai in October. More continental Europe and long-haul routes will be gradually introduced beyond that.

By end of this year, Cathay Pacific will have 48 aircraft installed with the new product. By the end of 2013, 87 aircraft in the airline’s long-haul fleet will feature Premium Economy.

Cathay Pacific’s New Long-haul Economy Class Seat

The new long-haul Economy Class seat features a cradle mechanism to enhance the level of comfort in the recline position, the latest in high-resolution touch-screen personal televisions, a USB outlet and an iPod/iPhone outlet that allows passengers to connect their own mobile devices to view content through the personal television. The seat also offers improved living space and more personal storage space.

The new seats will be fitted on all Cathay Pacific long-haul Boeing 777-300ER and Airbus A330-300 aircraft. The first aircraft will enter service in March flying to Sydney and Toronto initially. A total of 36 Boeing 777-300ERs and 26 Airbus 330-300s will be fitted with the seats by December 2013.

Details of the new products can be found in the table below:


Premium Economy Class

New Long-haul Economy

Current Long-haul Economy

Aircraft type

Boeing 777-300ER

Boeing 747-400

Airbus A330-300

Airbus A340-300

Boeing 777-300ER

Airbus A330-300

Boeing 777-300ER

Boeing 747-400

Airbus A330-300

Airbus A340-300


Airbus: 2-3-2

Boeing: 2-4-2

Airbus: 2-4-2

Boeing: 3-3-3

Airbus: 2-4-2

Boeing: 3-3-3

Cabin environment

A separate cabin with 26-34 seats

A bigger cabin compared to current long-haul Economy


Seat pitch




Seat width





A wider seat with centre console on one side and a wider armrest on the other to provide enhanced comfort








Larger range of recline distance to ensure passengers can relax in both sleeping and sitting upright position



Meal table

Large in-arm meal table provides a good experience for both work and eating

meal table

Back-mounted meal table

Cocktail table

Cocktail table on centre console with swing-out tray can be used to enjoy the welcome cocktail and drink service besides the main meal



Leg-rest and footrest

Leg-rest and footrest available for front row seat and aft-mounted footrest available for standard row.

The aft-mounted footrest has three ratchet positions to cater for all heights to stretch their legs comfortably.



PTV monitor size

10.6” widescreen TV to provide a better viewing experience.

9” touch screen monitor


In-seat power outlet

One in-seat universal power supply outlet for each passenger

One in-seat outlet for each passenger

One in-seat outlet for each passenger

Multi-port Connector (with iPhone/iPod and USB outlets)

Including an iPhone/iPod connector and a USB port, which allows passengers to connect their own devices and watch video through the Personal TV.

The USB port can be used to charge devices such as mobile phones and BlackBerrys

Same as Premium Economy Class


Extra personal storage space

Seat back mounted amenity stowage space for passengers to stow small amenities such as mobile phone, glasses and accessories.

Extra space for passenger to stow personal amenities such as mobile phone, glasses etc.

Cup holder mounted on the table is stable and robust to ensure no liquid spillage.

Back mounted cup holder

Living space

Living space is enhanced by minimizing the size of functional equipments’ seat boxes

Living space is enhanced by reducing the size of boxes for inflight entertainment and other functional equipment