Pacific Champ Air New Zealand Shines In Premium Economy

November 13, 2018
Air New Zealand capacity cuts earningss
Empty seats prompt capacity cut at Air New Zealand.

Air New Zealand Shines in Premium Economy. Five times Airline of the Year winner Air New Zealand missed out by a gnat’s whisker this year but picked up awards for Best Long-Haul Airline Pacific and Best Premium Economy.

Air New Zealand is widely recognized as an airline that punches well above its weight globally and is a carrier to watch when it comes to innovation. Editor-in-Chiel Geoffrey Thomas commented: “It is one of the few airlines in the world to have an investment grade credit rating, is a staunch supporter of its home country and has been enjoying a healthy expansion in both its domestic and international markets. Its overall product is superb, and its business class bed is outstanding.”

It is also a keen supporter of sustainability and has been exploring how digitization can help make life better for passengers.

Air New Zealand Pacific premium economy
Air New Zealand’s home base of Auckland. Photo: Steve Creedy.

And, of course, It continues to pump out the legendary safety videos that have spawned many imitators around the world.

READ: World’s Best Airlines For 2019

The unique Kiwi alchemy that has repeatedly broken new product ground is again being practiced in a bunker in Auckland so expect to hear more from AirNZ in the not too distant future.

Kiwis are a friendly bunch and know how to run a service industry. This shines through at AirNZ,   particularly in Business Premier with its great service, good food, and some impressive NZ wines.


Not everybody can afford business class, and Air New Zealand has been a frontrunner when it comes to premium economy, and the product has garnered a slew of awards.

Air NZ shines regarding leg room with generous 41-inch seat pitch (104.1cm) and a 19.3-inch seat width with nine-inch recline and a five-inch wide armrest.

Premium economy passengers get a priority check-in two pieces of checked luggage (up to 23kg each0 and two pieces of carry-on weighing up to 7kg each.

There’s a USB power connector, a universal power and an 11-inch high definition touchscreen that allows passengers to access more than 1700 hours of entertainment.  AirNZ usually has a pretty good selection, so there’s no problem finding something to watch.

There’s also noise-canceling headphones, a dedicated cabin staff as well as decent food and wine from a premium economy menu.

Other extras include an amenity kit on long-haul flights as well as extras such as hot towels.

Some carriers are only now coming to grips with the increasing popularity of premium economy, and if they want to find someone to emulate, Air New Zealand would be the one.

The Airline Excellence Awards, judged by seven editors with over 200 years’ industry experience, combines significant safety and government audits, with 12 key criteria that include: fleet age, passenger reviews profitability, investment rating, product offerings, and staff relations.

Only airlines with a seven-star safety rating qualify for the award.