Where to sit on the 748i

Discussion in 'Miles & More | Lufthansa, SWISS, Austrian/Partners' started by Wandering Aramean, Jun 3, 2012.  |  Print Topic

  1. Wandering Aramean
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    Wandering Aramean Gold Member

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    After exploring the cabin during the inaugural I've come up with some thoughts on which seats I think are best/worst in each cabin. My full notes are here but I'm too lazy to embed the images in this thread; those are in the blog post here. I hope the text is sufficient to help folks make informed decisions.


    First Class

    There isn’t really a bad seat in the nose of the 747-8i, but I’m quite partial to 1 A/K because of the nose curve. The D/G seat pair is a good option as a couple traveling together, though I’d still try for 1A/K.

    Business Class

    With 86 Business Class seats on the plane there are plenty to choose from, at least in theory. That said, there are definitely some which are more comfortable and spacious than others.

    On the upper deck I like row 84 for the extra bit of space in front of the seats. There is still a hard bulkhead there, but if you stand up and are climbing out of the window you’re not actually grabbing another passenger’s seat for balance. Also on the upper deck there are decent sized overhead bins, though smaller than those on the main deck, and the side wall storage bins are available for window seat passengers. The seats are the same as those in the window pairs downstairs, slightly narrower an angle than the center pair downstairs, making it a bit more cozy with your seatmate. Finally, the upper deck is a tiny bit louder than the main deck. Not a ton and not enough to bother me at all, but it is.

    On the main deck the center pairs are my preferred seats. The slightly wider angle provides a more spacious feeling and more space on the shared foot area. Plus, no climbing over neighbors. The proximity of rows 4, 9, 10 and 14 to lavs and galleys makes them rather less appealing overall. Row 14, in particular, is where the economy cabin lavs are so there is more traffic back there. The pasenger to lav ratio on the main deck is pretty rough, especially compared to upstairs. I didn’t see queuing when on the flight but I wasn’t sitting there the whole time so that’s not really a great measure.

    Overall my choice would be upstairs, especially if you want a window seat anyways. If you’re going for an aisle the center column downstairs offers the benefits of slightly quieter and no climbing neighbor, at the expense of a worse lav ratio and slightly busier crew serving that area.

    Economy Cabin

    There are, by my count, only six very good seats in economy on the plane. The are the four seats in row 21 and 22 A/K. They have unlimited legroom and 22 A/K have a window with a decent view and can get in and out without bothering the folks also in their row. The drawback of these seats is typical of other bulkhead seats: tray/IFE in the arm rest and no underseat storage. Those are trade-offs I’m willing to make in exchange for the legroom. The downside of sitting in this area, particularly row 22, is the proximity to the lavs. Expect to see a lot of foot traffic in the area.

    Next up in terms of decent seats are the bulkhead seats at 22 DEFG and 34. There is a bit of extra leg room but you cannot stretch your legs all the way forward. And, like the other bulkheads, fixed seat dividers. The bulkhead at row 34 is also the bassinet positions so there is a decent chance of babies there.

    If you don’t mind being the last people off the plane and the last people to get meal service then the pairs at rows 45-47 have a lot of space on the fuselage side of the seats. That space isn’t supposed to be used during take-off and landing, but there is a lot of room there once in flight.

    The IFE boxes sit at the outboard side of the seat mount brackets for the A, E and K columns. This slightly reduces foot space at those seats.

    The other interesting foot space issue comes in the DEFG column of seats. There are four seats but still only two mount points to the floor. The vertical risers are roughly about a third of the way in to the E and F seats. This creates a situation where there are only three foot wells for the four passengers in that area. The E/F passengers will have to straddle the mounting riser and share partially with the D/G passengers. Because of the way the IFE box is mounted at the E seat that column ends up having the worst foot space of any of the coach seats.

    There are a handful of overhead bin locations which have cabin equipment at them, making them unavailable for passenger use. The Sky Interior overheads mostly make that a non-issue in terms of accommodating all the cabin baggage, but still worth being aware of the following limited locations:
    • 24 ABC/HJK has magazine storage.
    • 33 ABC has safety equipment
    • 35ABC overhead has bassinets

    I sat in 31 D for most of the flight. I was quite fortunate that 31 E was unoccupied as that definitely helped things out. The four reasonably broad guys in the bulkhead at 22 didn’t look all that happy about their predicament, but they survived, too.

    Economy is never a great seating experience and this is no exception, but it is definitely better than the old 744 setup and it was tolerable.

    So, any questions???
     
  2. NYBanker
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    NYBanker Gold Member

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    What caused the increased noise upstairs? Was it the increased number of seats, or was it flight-related noise?

    Upstairs (on most carriers, which use the bubble for J seating) was usually the quietest and most intimate business cabin. Have they stretched the upper deck too far and taken away that intimacy?
     
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  3. Wandering Aramean
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    Wandering Aramean Gold Member

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    Flight-related noise upstairs, not crowd/capacity related as far as I could tell. It just sounded like the "hum" of the flight was a tiny bit louder. And one of the LH execs I was chatting with during the flight and sharing my observations nodded along, suggesting that they were accurate.

    The service/crowd-related noise is probably still much quieter upstairs. I say probably because on this particular flight the upstairs was all press and execs and it was not particularly sedate at any time. There were press conferences held and other such bits which definitely made it harder to compare as a "proper" evaluation of the experience.
     
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  4. jetsetter
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    jetsetter Silver Member

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    WOW! Thanks for the comprehensive review! Great job!
     
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