Delta Cuts Business-Class Seats, Adds Premium Economy on New 777 Arrangement
Big changes are coming down the line for Delta's 777-200s — including better business-class seats, fewer business-class seats and the addition of the carrier's "Premium Select" premium economy product.
The biggest surprise of this revelation is what isn't being changed: Delta is keeping a 3-3-3 seating arrangement in economy. American Airlines and United — as well as plenty of other airlines — have switched or are in the process of switching to 10 seats across in economy on the Boeing 777. But, Delta is sticking with what it's calling "customer-friendly nine-abreast seating."
When we reached out to Delta for confirmation about this new 777 arrangement, a Delta spokesperson provided this statement:
Delta regularly evaluates optimal cabin configurations that reflect demand for premium seating and customer comfort. With the addition of Delta Premium Select on the 777, we have provided even more premium seating options for our customers onboard. Delta has also chosen to configure customer-friendly nine-abreast seating on the Boeing 777 instead of 10 , which provides more space to customers in the Main Cabin.
Delta wouldn't answer our inquiry if the new 777 business class would have the new Delta One closeable suites. However, it's previously been reported that these suites would be installed on Delta's 777s after making their debut on the airline's Airbus A350s.
Between these larger seats and the addition of premium economy, there's going to be a cutback in the number of business-class seats installed on the new 777 arrangement. FlightGlobal reports that there will be "28 lie-flat seats in 21 mini-suites." The reporter clarified on Twitter that the two middle seats in the 1-2-1 arrangement will be combined into one suite. Currently, there are 37 business-class seats on the Delta 777, so this is nearly a 25% cutback in seats for this premium cabin.
However, Delta did confirm that its new "Premium Select" premium economy product will be installed in this new arrangement. Delta has been treating its Comfort+ extra-legroom economy seats as premium economy for almost a year now. But, these new seats will be Delta's first true premium economy product in line with what other airlines provide.
Delta's Premium Select seats will have 38 inches of pitch, 19 inches of width, 7 inches of recline, a larger entertainment screen, an amenity kit and priority check-in/security/baggage.
Overall, this new arrangement will have 296 seats: 28 in business, 48 premium economy and 220 in economy. This compares with the 291 seats on Delta's 777s today: 37 in business, 36 extra legroom and 218 in economy.