It’s true that when most livery redesigns are revealed, public reaction is usually mixed, with a hint of disappointment due to what can only be described as a world shortage of coloured paint. However, thankfully, this shortage hasn’t reached the Pacific yet where colour still seems to be in abundance. The latest carrier to rebrand is Air Tahiti Nui. We recently revealed their new brand image, but the carrier was shy on showcasing what this would mean for their livery.
The good news is that the livery’s essence has remained, and is fairly untouched, with the signature wave cheat line, red stripes and Tiare floral tail all still proudly displayed. However, much like Fiji Airways and Hawaiian both have adopted, the airline has opted to bring its cultural heritage to the foreground, adorning the rear half of the aircraft with a traditional pacific islander tattoos that adds a somewhat ‘Moana’esque’ tropical element to the aprons of CDG and LAX amongst others.
At the front end of the aircraft, the new typeface adds a sophisticated premium and elegant touch to the design. The tail design actually isn’t just a Disney interpretation of ‘Pacific Island’ each hieroglyph represents the flora and fauna of the islands. The Tiare is supported by manta rays, albatrosses, fishing hooks, waves and flora, all symbols of the famous French Polynesian islands.
Onboard each of the four dreamliners (named after the islands of Bora Bora, Moorea, Rangiroa and Nuka Hiva, the airline has refreshed its cabins and introduced a new Premium Economy class.
In business class, the older lie flat business class seats have been replaced with fully flat Rockwell Collins Parallel Diamond seats which offer 16″ touchscreens. These seats aren’t the biggest lie flat seats in the skies, but they are going to be a welcome upgrade for most. Like Hawaiian, understanding that most passengers are premium leisure travellers, Air Tahiti Nui have opted for 2 x 2 x 2 configuration meaning that most passengers travelling as couples, can sit in close proximity to each other. For solo travellers, we recommend the middle pairs as both seats offer aisle access.
The airline has opted for details in the fabrics and finishing which reflect the islands natural colours, with each seat offering a wave of turquoise which lifts the cabin colour and design. We love the embossed leather headrests in each seat, which delivers the Tiare motif, subtly reinforcing the brand image for every passenger. In premium economy, the airline has opted for Zodiac Aerospace’s Z535 which offers passengers a 38″ seat pitch and a recline of 8″. The seats offer calf rests in the front row, large 13″ touch screens and are arranged in 5 rows of 2 x 3 x 2.
In economy, sadly passenger comfort is going to be a little tighter on width, due to the carrier opting for a 3 x 3 x 3 configuration using brand new Zodiac seats, meaning passengers used to the airline’s older A340 fleet will find things a little narrower and tighter than usual, with economy now only offering 31″ of legroom compared to the more spacious 33″ on the older fleet. However a brand new 11.8″ touchscreen IFE system and onboard WiFi will help distract passengers during their long-haul hops.
While passenger comfort might be tighter in economy, opting for this new fleet of aircraft will increase reliability, reduce delays, increase passenger comfort through higher air pressure and humidity, and for those in the premium cabins, offer increased comfort and entertainment. We salute the carrier for opting to celebrate and enhance their brand rather than push in an entirely new direction.