Delays in Austrian’s new business class mean delays in my US Airways award…

Austrian is in the process of installing a new business class product throughout their longhaul fleet, a project that should be completed by April of 2013. This is pretty exciting since Austrian is known for having excellent catering, so with this new seat they should have a truly world class business class product.

Originally the first planes with the new business class were supposed to be in service as of early this month. Unfortunately they’ve kept pushing the start date back, as apparently there’s a bit of a delay with the installation.

As of now it looks like the inaugural flight with 767 new business class will be from Vienna to Dubai on December 24:

And the inaugural flight with 777 new business class will be from Vienna to Tokyo on December 23:

Now, usually I try to avoid “stalking” airline schedules as much as possible, though I have a bit of a stake in this, since I’ve been planning a 90,000 US Airways mile business class award from the US to Asia via Europe, and one of the main reasons for it was to try Austrian’s new business class. I’ve kind of been holding off until one of these reconfigured planes starts flying and I have a good chance of getting it, though I can’t wait forever.

So instead I might just take the opposite approach, and fly EgyptAir and Ethiopian business class to Asia via Africa. If nothing else that would make a more interesting trip report, right?

Comments

  1. I’m flying (SBA-SFO-)JFK-VIE(-ATH-JTR) on OS for my honeymoon 7/22/13. Hopefully it’ll all be in place by then. How’s the old business class?

  2. @ alan — I would hope the installation would be complete by then fleet wide. The old business class angled flat seats, so isn’t great, though many say the food makes up for it.

  3. I’ve got a US award on hold that includes BKK-VIE C in early June, hope it’s not too much a delay.

  4. MS has a pretty solid hard product (especially their 777-300s). The soft product leaves much to be desired, though the crew is (usually) very friendly and tries hard (they’re just not refined, despite their best efforts to be so). Also, it’s a dry airline, but until recently your drink of choice was Diet Coke with lime, so you shouldn’t mind. Although I did notice that you’ve gotten hooked on Champagne as of late… 😉

  5. @lucky — I’ve been looking at the same options, but i’m more keen on the 787 iad-add on ethopian. similarly, they keep switching around their 787 routes and i want to be sure i get it

  6. I’m eyeing mid/late-March to fly OS, but that seems a bit dicey doesn’t it?

    Oh and btw is the Do&Co catering only ex VIE?

  7. Just rechecked my JFK-VIE flight on OS for Jan 11 and appears it has been switched to an old 767. The Austrian also now says that the flight will not have the new product. Huge bummer.

  8. Any sense of what is driving the delays? I, too, have been stalking the marketing calendar they’ve put out and it now looks like the first flight ex-JFK with the new product is 3/20/13 (previously was 12/24ish…)

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