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Looking for reviews for the new ATN Dreamliner economy and premuim economy

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For those that have travelled on the new Air Tahiti Nui Dreamliner I  was wondering about seat comfort in economy(for me-just curious)and premium economy for my friend who has a bad back?

He has enough points to go business on United but his points don't cover Air Tahiti Nui. So I thought if premium economy was really comfy maybe he could just pay the difference from the flight credit from Paul Gauguin for not taking the flight through them. I really want us both to take Air Tahiti Nui so we can share the excitement of the beginning of the trip together.

I even thought that he could do economy premium on ATN on the way there and take business on United on the way back, but it is sooo expensive that way.

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Posted (edited)

I can't speak to Air Tahiti Nui economy, but can offer some feedback on Premium Economy (and Business Class). We just returned last night from our trip. We started our trip on June 6 in Premium Economy on the 787 Dreamliner. We chose Premium Economy due to the better seating configuration for a couple - it's 2-3-2 in PE vs. 3-3-3 in regular Economy - allowing me to have a window and my wife an aisle, and no one else beside us. Each seat gets a complimentary bottle of water, and an amenity kit (socks, sleep mask, ear plus, toothbrush/toothpaste, towelette, etc). The seats have more recline than regular coach seats, more legroom, and foot/leg rests. Much better than economy seats on domestic airlines, but it's still an airline seat, so after eight hours, it still feels a little hard. But overall, we were pleased with the Premium Economy product and feel it is a reasonable compromise between being packed into regular economy versus paying the higher cost of Business Class.

 

For our return flight on June 18, we were also booked in Premium Economy on the 787, but about a week before we left home we received a notice from Air Tahiti Nui that they had switched our return flight to one of their remaining A340-300 aircraft, which do not have Premium Economy. As a result, they upgraded us to Business Class for free - which was great on the overnight flight leaving at 9:30pm. The seats in the A340 Business Class felt very similar to sit in as did the Premium Economy seats on the 787, but the A340 Business Class seats had much more extensive recline - 160 degrees - which means they are not quite lay-flat, but close. The meals and service were obviously better in Business Class than Premium Economy, and the amenity kit was nicer. If money was no object, Business Class is they way to go, but I've always been reluctant to pay that much for an airline ticket that still gets your there at the same time as everyone else! The free upgrade was a pleasant, unexpected bonus, and the better seat for the 7.5 hour flight from Papeete to LAX actually made that flight seem shorter than our five hour flight home to Charlotte from LAX in American Airlines coach.

 

When (not if) we return to French Polynesia, we would certainly book Premium Economy again if we are on Air Tahiti Nui. I might even consider booking PE on the way to Papeete and then book Business Class on the way home for the overnight flight. I personally don't think Business Class is worth the price on a daytime/early evening flight when I don't want to sleep. But for an overnight flight, the better, flatter seats make for a more pleasant trip. 

Edited by JIMinNC

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Good for you Jim getting upgraded to Business class for the return. Curious did you book your flights through PG ? If not what did you do after departing the ship ?

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Posted (edited)
2 hours ago, DGK said:

Good for you Jim getting upgraded to Business class for the return. Curious did you book your flights through PG ? If not what did you do after departing the ship ?

 

When we booked our cruise last fall, PG did not offer an option to book Premium Economy through them; not sure if they offer it now or not. We decided we definitely did not want the 3-3-3 configuration in regular economy on the 787, so we booked our air direct with Air Tahiti Nui to get Premium Economy.

 

We did book a two night pre-cruise land package through PG, so even though we booked our own air, we provided that info to PG and they provided the bus transfers from the airport to the Intercontinental Papeete and from the IC to the ship on embarkation day.

 

We did not purchase a post-cruise package from PG. Instead, we booked three nights in an overwater bungalow at the Hilton Lagoon Resort on Moorea direct with Hilton. After departing the ship at 10am on the last day, we just walked with our luggage a block or so from the ship over to the ferry terminal and took the 11:40am Terevau ferry back over to Moorea. We picked up a taxi at the Moorea ferry terminal and were at the Hilton by about 12:45pm or so. After check in, we hung out at the pool for about 30 minutes or so until our room was ready, and by 1:30 we were in our bungalow, sitting on our deck looking at the beautiful lagoon. On check-out day, since I'm Hilton Gold and my wife is Hilton Diamond, they gave us a 2pm check-out. We dropped our luggage at the front desk at 2pm, had lunch, and our taxi to the ferry terminal arrived at 3:30. We took the 4:40pm Terevau ferry back over to Papeete, and then after a short wait, shared a cab with another couple back to Papeete airport. We arrived at the airport about 10 minutes before Air Tahiti Nui opened their check-in counter at 6pm. Since we got the lucky Business Class upgrade, that also came with a pass to the Air Tahiti Nui VIP lounge. We hung out there and chatted with another couple who had also been on the PG, until our flight boarded at 8:40pm. It all worked perfectly.

 

 

Edited by JIMinNC

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Thanks for the feedback!  I am trying to get as much feedback as possible so then I can tell my friend ---well, it seems like most people---...

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Thanks so much Jim for taking the time to post your detailed response. It sounds as if your transfers , flights , pre/ post cruise stays all worked out perfectly. We weren’t considering a post cruise stay just pre cruise but you gave us lots to consider, 

Donna 

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In economy I prefer the old 2-4-2 configuration. The current 3-3-3 seems IMO to be a bit more crammed. However, the upgrade to premium/economy is more than twice what we paid for economy so no upgrade for us. 

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Upgrading to PE is a no brainer. Comfort is very important as being able to put your your legs up. The 787 economy has a pretty small pitch. 

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