While TAP Portugal‘s two A330s featuring the brand new business class product are already flying between Portugal and the USA, the airline has announced that it will now retrofit seven of its current A330 fleet with a brand new product in business class. The seats won’t be the same as the Sogerma Solstys seats found in the latest aircraft (pictured here).
Instead the carrier is opting for a different staggered seat concept with a slightly better LOPA from Thompson Aero. The new supplier will mean that the current business class quota can not only be maintained, but increased by an extra seat to 25 seats.
This hasn’t compromised personal space however as part of a galley and a closet will be removed to accommodate the new seats.
The new Thompson Vantage seats (pictured above without the TAP trim and finish), similar to those found on Aer Lingus, Brussels Airlines or JetBlue, will interlock and alternate, offering a more compressed LOPA, and will also mean that certain passengers will benefit from the individual ‘Throne’ seats that are the most popular in this cabin design.
Other passengers including those in the centre will benefit from side by side seating with a perfect mix of privacy for those travelling alone due to the protruding partitions, or close enough for passengers travelling together.
However, the best news is that (almost) all seats will have aisle access, with every seat benefitting from a fully flat bed, a vast improvement on the comfortable, yet angled-lie flat seats that the carrier currently offers.
There is no news if the 7 aircraft will operate on specific routes, or be cycled through the long haul destinations that TAP flies to. Joining the long-haul fleet, TAP will also renovate its medium-haul aircraft interiors. The programme is due to start in in a few days for the A320 Family fleet and in 1Q17 for the A330ceo fleet. All the cabin modifications will be completed by the end of 2017.