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FLYING ON AIR NEW ZEALAND’S 777-300

We are flying to Brisbane on Air New Zealand’s new Boeing 777-300 series aircraft. This plane usually travels between Auckland and Los Angeles. I am guessing it will travel across to Brisbane this morning and back to Auckland in time to depart for Los Angeles tonight.

I was fortunate to get on board this particular aircraft when it was first introduced to New Zealand, and check out the seats and configuration, but it is no comparison to actually travelling on it over a period of time.

We board at the front of the aircraft and walk through business and premium economy. This in itself seems like an invasion of privacy for the business class and premium economy class passengers. They have boarded first, but then have to sit and watch hundreds of economy passengers file past. This is quite normal with most airlines but sometimes there is a choice, turn right to economy or left to business or premium economy. That seems a far better option for those who have paid to have a bit more leg room and privacy.

The seats at the pointy end of the plane are cream leather, and look very nice. Business class is similar to the seats on the 777-200 aircraft but premium economy has done a shift and become more user friendly. Air New Zealand took note of comments from past passengers travelling in premium economy on the 777-200, and made modifications accordingly. The seats are softer, and less structured, and there is more leg room and privacy.

But it is economy we are more interested in, as although flying in business or premium economy is a cherished dream, for the majority of us, economy is where we will be.

The seat configuration is three, four, three. I usually always request an aisle seat in the middle block of seats for easy access. The aisle between the seats seems tight. I watch a steward walking up and down and having to restrict his arms to get through. The distance between my seat and the seat in front also seems less. Not so much the leg room area, but the body space. I am thankful there is no one sitting in front of me, as when the seat back in front is in the reclining position, there is very little room.

The inflight entertainment system is touch screen. A good selection of movies, if you have booked “The Works” for TV Programmes and music options so plenty to keep you entertained to your destination.

The cabin service is adequate. The flight is only just over three hours, so it is difficult to compare to the experience of flying long haul with other airlines.

Generally I think Air New Zealand works hard to make your travelling experience as comfortable as possible.

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