Beware The ‘Weirdest, Most Awkward’ Business Class Layout In The World

'The Worst Flying In The Sky'

Beware The ‘Weirdest, Most Awkward’ Business Class Layout In The World

Image: YouTube

A YouTube creator couple have stumbled across one of the strangest business class layouts we’ve ever seen, describing it as ‘weird’, ‘awkward’ and ‘the worst flying in the sky’.

Earlier this year, we proclaimed that an aged and decaying United Airlines plane was home to the worst business class layout around thanks to its ‘coffin seats’ and the plethora of unwanted eye contact you could expect at 30,000 feet. However, a new contender may be vying for that coveted top spot…

Kara and Nate, a seemingly happy couple of YouTube content creators hailing from the illustrious Nashville, Tennessee, decided to fly Air New Zealand’s infamous business class. Costing them around A$5400 for two separate flights, totalling around eight hours, the pair had been forewarned about the cabin’s layout which has been branded by some as ‘the worst flying in the sky.’

In fairness to Air New Zealand, it’s worth noting that the pre-boarding process offered by the airline was a delight: the couple reported having breezed through check-in and, as is customary when you purchase a business class ticket, were entitled to full access to their well-reviewed business lounge, where they enjoyed a variety of hot and cold foods, barista made coffee, and all the expected trimmings.

However, when the couple boarded their fights, things took an expected if unpleasant turn for the worse…

The Perks Of Air New Zealand’s Boeing 777 Business Class

There’s much to like about this business-class cabin, and those things shouldn’t go overlooked before we get into the real weirdness of the experience: Kara was greeted with a complimentary welcome drink and was quick to praise the entertainment system’s massive offering of movies and TV.

Other benefits included a surprisingly wide number of outlets on offer for device charging, despite the plane’s somewhat advanced years, as well as great food and high-speed WiFi for the duration of the Sydney to Auckland journey.

However, despite all of this, there aren’t enough amenities in the world to override Kara’s initial reaction to the layout of the cabin:

“This is so weird.”

Kara of ‘Daily Drop’
As you can see, things get cozy on Air NZ. Image: YouTube

The Problem With Air New Zealand’s Boeing 777 Business Class

There’s really no two ways about it: Air New Zealand’s seat configuration leaves a lot to be desired. The strange hanging of the seats towards the nearest aisle — rather than towards the front of the plane as is customary on most carriers — makes for a lot of awkward and unwanted interaction and eye contact with other flyers.

Perhaps the singularly weirdest part of the layout is the fact that as well as the seat configuration meaning you see “a lot of other people’s heads” throughout your journey, the seat in front of you also doubles up as your footrest, making you feel incredibly awkward about stretching out your legs to relax and earned them the less than ideal moniker as:

“The world’s most awkward buddy seat.”

Nate of ‘Daily Drop’

The couple did add, however, that once the seats were turned into fully reclined beds, they were undeniably comfy, cozy, and easy to sleep on… if you can get over the proximity to your fellow passengers.

You can see the purple glow… but also the strange layout. Image: YouTube

The Bottom Line: Beware

While the couple were quick to emphasise that any trip in business class is preferable to that in economy — so as to not seem overly demanding or spoiled, indicating a respectable self-awareness that many in the travel content creation space severely lack — they didn’t rate this experience too highly overall.

Even though the second leg of their journey — this time from Auckland to Tahiti — included an updated business class that bathed the cabin in a delightful purple glow, they said it was overall similar to the first leg in that it was pretty uninspiring stuff.

Nevertheless, they rated the experience a respectable 71 out of 100, allowing proficiencies in the lounge, food, and tech departments to compensate for a thoroughly leftfield cabin layout. So, next time you’re flying down under, go careful with your business class bookings.