View Full Version : Shape up before you fly Jetstar

12th Dec 2003, 16:52
Fri "Australian Financial Review"

Shape up before you fly Jetstar
December 12th, 2003

Qantas's launch of its low-cost carrier may mean more cheap seats on some routes, but passengers will need to be in pretty good shape before they get on board.

Jetstar is being touted by Qantas as the lowest-cost airline in Australia and one of the ways it's going to achieve that goal is by squishing more people on every plane.

The Airbus A320s Jetstar plans to use are being reconfigured using ``slim-line'' seats which are narrower and even more upright that Australian travellers are used to.

The 30-inch (76.2 centimetres) seat pitch the space from the back of a seat to the back of the one behind it is less that the average seat pitch of 32 inches (81.3cm) found on Qantas and Virgin Blue aircraft.

This tricky bit of engineering means Jetstar will cram 177 seats on aircraft that normally take about 150 seats.

That is pretty rough going, even by other budget airlines' standards.

Earlier this month, US carrier JetBlue proudly announced it had taken out a row of seats from each aircraft to give its passengers an extra two inches of legroom. Apparently JetBlue made the changes after complaints from passengers.

JetBlue is now offering 34 inches of seat pitch on just over half its seats, with the rest of its seats pitched at the Australian standard of 32 inches. To do that, it has reduced the number of seats on the plane from 162 to 156.

But for Jetstar, getting more people on each flight is part of the strategy to lower costs to a level at which it can compete with Virgin Blue.

The 30-inch seat pitch that Jetstar is aiming for has been used with some success on European low-cost airlines.

Budget carrier easyJet has its passengers sitting ever closer together. A 29-inch seat pitch is standard on its aircraft.

But Australia's flying public have become used to more room than what is about to be offered.

And statistics seem to indicate the size of the average Australian is following the US trend rather than the European one.


12th Dec 2003, 17:00
Geez,where have we heard this argument before?

These were the same journos that poo-poohed Virgin Blue and their seat pitch arrangements when first launched.

Fact is if its cheap enough then people dont give a rats ar$e for a short (<3 hour) flight.

As the man said, they paid their money....................

13th Dec 2003, 14:04
as long as the pilots are comfortable and reasonably paid then i dont see a problem

Sheep Guts
13th Dec 2003, 20:50

If this is true maybe JetStar arent emulating Jet Blue at all. The initial story they were getting the Leather seat option like Jet Blue, must be a non truth.

Sounds like they are emulating ANA in Japan who horshoe 560 people in a 744.

Why do this to a A320 why not purchase an A321 and be done with it. Sounds to me theyve got cheap deal with Airbus.


14th Dec 2003, 12:55
Show me a VirginBlue aircraft with 32" of seat pitch! And the seat pitch on the QF 738s and 734s is actually 31" but using slimline seats.

The article doesn't bother to mention the European charter standard of 28" or the European 'full service' standard of 30".

What about the QF 737 classics with the old Y seats? That was 31" at best. Never saw the AFR do a write up about that!

Also according to airbus the standard capacity for a 320 in all Y is 162 @ 32" pitch (and that's not using slimline seating).

I just love selective reporting. :rolleyes:

Besides. Pax have a choice to pay higher fares and fly mainline or QFLink to their destination. Or perhaps people should keep getting something for nothing?

14th Dec 2003, 16:44
Sheep - I don't know if you have been on a Japanese Domestic J747 but the seat pitch is no worse than VB. To get 560 in,they only have a Dozen or so std. business class seats at the front, take out about half the toilets (about 10 instead of 20) and fewer, smaller galleys. If you have seen how much floor space first and business class take up you will know what I mean. From memory before the advent of business class the 100/200 series 747s used to seat well over 400 (some close to 500). These days alot are configured under 400. Boeing I think found that many customers wanted 747 more for its range rather than its absolute capacity. This is probably why 777/340 aircraft are more popular sellers these days.

14th Dec 2003, 18:08
slim line seats - tighter and more upright than aussie passengers are used to.

Someone better tell the ppl travelling on QF International, the new 738s and the re config'd 734s

Going Boeing
15th Dec 2003, 08:06
I understand that the Jetstar aircraft will be configured similarly to Jet Blue's A320's in that there will be no galleys which gives more floor area to get the extra seats in.

15th Dec 2003, 15:50
Sounds to me like not only are Qantas being tight arses - they're making them too!



16th Dec 2003, 00:59
Can anyone in the know advise if a Jetstar boarding pass can get QF club access? (for members that is);

And/Or - be part of the frequent flyer program?.

The points are not as big an issue for me but the pre-flight turps in the QF club is.


16th Dec 2003, 06:34
I would be most suprised to see Jetstar using Qantas terminals, I would expect them to use the common user terminals and get in the face of Virgin.

17th Dec 2003, 10:46
From what I've heard they are going to be using the old Ansett southern finger in Melbourne. Not sure about the other ports so that will be intersting.