Virgin America announces “Main Cabin Select”

From The Earth Times:

SAN FRANCISCO, July 28 /PRNewswire/ — Virgin America, the
California-based airline that is on a mission to make flying good again, today announced that guests now have a new option called “Main Cabin Select” (MCS), in addition to First Class and Main Cabin service currently available on every Virgin America flight. The new service is taking Main Cabin to the next level by offering guests the greatest available legroom within the existing Main Cabin configuration, at 38-inches of seat pitch in the exit row and in the bulkhead, as well as a host of perks that every traveler loves.

The features include:
– Complimentary food, cocktails, and beverages from the full in-flight
menu, via the airline’s unique touch-screen food ordering system
– All-access pass to the Red In-flight Entertainment(TM) system’s
countless on-demand entertainment options, including premium TV and films
(currently live TV, videogames, Google Maps, MP3s and music videos are
complimentary for every class of service)
– 38-inches of seat pitch
– A dedicated overhead bin space for luggage
– Priority check-in at airports
– Priority security screening
– Priority aircraft boarding

Interesting, I’ll give them that. The one idea that kind of made me chuckle is “dedicated overhead bin space.” Hah, I can’t wait to see how they plan on enforcing the overhead bin space around the exit rows and bulkhead so that this actually seems like a benefit. Also, I can’t help but think that this’ll be viewed awfully elitist to some. In the case of first class you have a curtain or at least some sort of partition, but here you’ll literally have someone in the same seat right in front of you be served with all kinds of neat stuff while you starve.

OK, maybe a bit of an exaggeration, but still. Very creative, and I think overall it should succeed, but it might be a bit odd at first.

Comments

  1. “Hah, I can’t wait to see how they plan on enforcing the overhead bin space around the exit rows and bulkhead so that this actually seems like a benefit.”

    Let them board first.

  2. Right, but then the benefit is pre-boarding, not “dedicated overhead bin space.” For me a big benefit of being 1K at UA is being able to board via the red carpet, meaning I don’t have to board until just a few minutes before the door closes.

    Having “dedicated overhead bin space” (which sounds basically like guaranteed overhead bin space), would be a HUGE plus for those that like to board last minute, but is a real challenge to enforce.

  3. Why is it going to be perceived as elitist? The other passengers in the economy cabin can order the same food. They just didn’t prepay it.

  4. Oliver, perhaps I’m over-analyzing (I know that, would be a first 😀 ).

    I always think of things in the industry from the view of ma and pa kettle. They understand and know about first class, that it’s a separate cabin, etc.

    I already see how much trouble people have understanding that Economy Plus is a separate cabin on UA, and that doesn’t include any special services. I can only imagine how confused some will be when they see the people around them getting free drinks, free food, free movies, etc. I’m sure the FA’s will get quite a few comments like “but that person got it free, why don’t I get it free as well?”

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