Thai Airways airbus to retrofit A320s with reclining seats

Photo courtesy of Airbus Aircraft

In a groundbreaking move for aviation luxury in the Asia-Pacific region, Airbus has inked a deal with Thai Airways International Public Company Limited (THAI) to retrofit its fleet of 20 A320ceo aircraft with premium reclining business class seats. This marks Airbus’ first-ever cabin retrofit for a single-aisle fleet in this part of the world.

This initiative is part of THAI’s broader strategy to enhance passenger comfort and experience, following the recent integration of its former subsidiary, Thai Smile Airways, into the parent company earlier this year.

Under this landmark agreement, Airbus Services will install 12 business class seats on each A320ceo, featuring backrests that recline up to 8 inches for a more relaxed sitting position. The retrofitting project is set to kick off by the end of the year.

Once the retrofit is complete, the A320s will boast a two-class configuration, offering 12 business class and 144 economy seats, significantly upgrading the travel experience for all passengers. This transformation marks a shift from the previous all-economy configuration, which seated between 168 and 174 passengers.

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As of April, THAI operates a modern and diverse Airbus fleet, including 20 A320s, three A330-300s, and 20 A350-900s. Chai Eamsiri, THAI’s Chief Executive Officer stated that the acquisition of 20 A320 aircraft from THAI Smile Airways has bolstered THAI’s route network, improved fleet efficiency, and enhanced the airline’s market competitiveness.

“These aircraft will serve THAI’s domestic and regional operations, aiming to provide seamless and convenient flight connectivity. The retrofit of reclining business seats will offer passengers greater comfort, elevating their travel experience.”

Cristina Aguilar, Senior Vice President of Customer Services at Airbus, added that THAI is thrilled to embark on this cabin retrofit project with Thai Airways, reported Airbus Aircraft.

“This agreement underscores our commitment to enhancing passenger comfort and delivering exceptional travel experiences. We look forward to seeing these upgraded A320ceo aircraft take to the skies, offering passengers unparalleled comfort with the new reclining business class seats.”

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Puntid Tantivangphaisal

Originally from Hong Kong, Puntid moved to Bangkok in 2020 to pursue further studies in translation. She holds a Bachelor's degree in Comparative Literature from the University of Hong Kong. Puntid spent 8 years living in Manchester, UK. Before joining The Thaiger, Puntid has been a freelance translator for 2 years. In her free time, she enjoys swimming and listening to music, as well as writing short fiction and poetry.

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