As of now American is the only US airline to offer their passengers pajamas. American just offers them in international first class, though they’ve announced that they’ll be offering pajamas in business class on their route between Los Angeles and Sydney, which launches on December 17, 2015.
American Airlines pajamas
That’s probably because they’re operating the flight as a joint venture with Qantas, and Qantas offers pajamas in business class on their flights.
United doesn’t offer pajamas in first class on any of their flights, while Delta doesn’t either, though they also don’t offer an international first class cabin.
Via Rene’s Points, Delta will begin offering pajamas in Delta One (business class) between Los Angeles and Sydney and Los Angeles and Shanghai as of December 15, 2015. Apparently pajamas will be progressively rolled out on more flights after that, though no exact timeline has been given.
I also reached out to Delta earlier in the day to ask if they had any further info, though they just said they “expect to have more to share in the coming weeks.” It sure sounds to me like this might be part of a larger product enhancement.
The two launch routes for pajamas seem random, since they’re not Delta’s longest routes, and arguably not their most premium (at least the Los Angeles to Shanghai flight).
So what’s the explanation for their route choices for pajamas? My guess is that it has to do with the fact that those are two of the only longhaul routes where American, Delta, and United compete head-to-head. They also all fly Los Angeles to Tokyo Narita, though my guess is that this is a market Delta has relatively conceded, given that American and United have joint venture partners also operating the route — namely JAL and ANA, respectively.
I’d love to be a fly on the wall in one of these meetings between the onboard product people and the bean counters. What exactly goes into deciding whether to add pajamas or not? I would assume they cost a few dollars each, so it’s an investment of up to a couple of hundred dollars per flight. Presumably they don’t think pajamas in and of themselves will increase yields, but rather that they’re part of an overall product which they hope people will pay for.
I’m curious to see if Delta ends up rolling these out on all longhaul flights, and if so, if American and United match.
Even though I’m someone who wears pajamas on virtually every longhaul flight, I’m not actually sure I’d offer them if I ran an airline, as they do seem wasteful in many ways. In my experience only some people will change into pajamas, but most of them won’t actually take the pajamas with them off the plane.
So while they’re great marketing if people take them home and use them again, if they’re literally single use pajamas, it’s tough to justify ones which are decent quality while also keeping in mind they’ll only be used once. At the same time if they’re not decent quality, people won’t even wear them once.
Singapore Airlines doesn’t offer amenity kits in business class, which puzzles some, given that they’re considered one of the most premium airlines. But I actually think they’re quite smart, as they simply have all the amenities you could want stocked in the lavatories and galleys. They saw how much kits were being wasted and left behind, and decided based on that it didn’t make sense to hand them out. And I sort of think that makes sense.
When offered pajamas on planes, do you wear them? And if so, do you take them with you, or just leave them on the plane?