Rest assured: Airbus’ Head of Passenger Comfort is focused on inflight well-being

Mr Kevin Keniston

Passengers can literally sleep easier on Airbus aircraft as a result of the company’s commitment to their comfort.

28 October 2013 Headline news

In continuing to keep those who fly aboard Airbus aircraft at the heart of its philosophy, the company has appointed Kevin Keniston as Head of Passenger Comfort to concentrate on cabin elements and the journey experience from a traveller perspective.

“My role is to be the voice of the passenger,” Keniston said. “We know they are increasingly discerning and, as flights are longer, we need to ensure that inflight comfort is a central focus of cabin design.”

Travellers already are benefitting from Airbus’ established modern standard for long-haul comfort – which includes an 18-inch wide seat in economy class – meeting the evolving requirements of the air transport industry, as long flights become more frequent and cover greater distances, while people generally grow taller and wider.

New research from Airbus and the London Sleep Centre reveals that an 18-inch seat can improve passenger sleep quality by 53 per cent, compared to the older, narrower 1950s-era 17-inch industry norm still used by other aircraft manufacturers today.

In addition, the study – which simulated inflight conditions – showed passengers fell asleep nearly 15 per cent quicker, while getting an average of 28 minutes more rest – resulting from fewer awakenings once asleep.

“The extra inch can have a very significant impact on passengers, allowing greater freedom of movement to find comfort, especially on long-haul flights,” Keniston said. “These findings showed it made the difference between restless and restful sleep.”

Keniston’s appointment comes as Airbus continues its cabin comfort campaign, highlighting the company’s ongoing innovation to set the modern standard for long-haul travel.

Beginning with the A300 and continuing through the company’s modern, efficient product line – from the single-aisle A320 Family, to widebody A330 and A350 XWB jetliners, and the 21st century flagship A380 – all Airbus aircraft are designed with the space to accommodate at least an 18-inch standard seat in economy class.

For more, visit airbus.com/comfort section.

Read the press release for additional information on the impact of seat width on passenger comfort.  

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