Korean Air finished upgrading fleet

Korean Air finished upgrading fleet

After six years of renovations, Korean Air has reportedly finished upgrading the premium and economy cabins on jets throughout its expansive fleet, reports Business Traveller.

Beginning in 2005, the Korean carrier started improving the seats and other features on 49 of its aircraft. The remaining 19 planes currently in the airline's fleet are new and were initially constructed with the upgraded amenities.

The first phase of the upgrades took place between 2005 and 2008, during which time Korean Air refitted 17 Boeing 747 jumbo jets. Between 2009 and 2011, the company carried out upgrades on 13 Boeing 777 and 19 Airbus A330 aircraft.

Taken altogether, the fleet includes 17 renovated Boeing 747s; nine new and nine refurbished Boeing 777-200ERs; six new and four refitted Boeing 777-300ERs; 16 upgraded Airbus A330-300s; and four new and three enhanced Airbus A330-200s.

Overall, Korean Air's refurbishing program replaced more than 14,000 seats in first, business and economy class cabins throughout its fleet. In the first class cabin, the carrier installed Kosmo Suites, Kosmo Sleepers and Sleeper seats, while the business class section was fitted with Prestige Sleepers and Prestige Plus seats. All cabins were equipped with an upgraded AVOD in-flight entertainment system.

The most comfortable new form of seating is the Kosmo Suite. This equipment features a shell containing a cozy seat, which is able to convert into an 82-inch fully flat bed. The new suites feature seats that are 26.5 inches wide, six inches wider than Korean Air's previous first class seating. Other amenities include a movable armrest, a massage feature, an adjustable reading light and a 23-inch video screen.

The Kosmo Sleeper is the next-best option in first class. This seat reclines to become an angled lie-flat bed measuring 83 inches in length. Other features include an adjustable leg and foot rest, lumbar support and a privacy screen between seats.

In addition to its current fleet, Korean Air plans to take delivery of 10 Airbus A380 superjumbo jets. The first of these aircraft will arrive in May, with four more to be delivered by the end of 2011. The remaining five jets will begin flying in 2014.

The upcoming Korean Air A380 will feature several alluring premium amenities. The entire upper deck of the aircraft will be devoted to business class, having space for up to 94 passengers. Additionally, these planes will be fitted with the world's first in-air duty free shops, to which first and business class passengers will have early access.

By Arnold Meyer

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