The future of economy class cabins on commercial jets could be reshaped because of the COVID-19 pandemic. New cabin seating arrangements have already been conceptualized by an Italian design firm this week that shows plastic shields and backward seats.
Aviointeriors has designed a "hygienic screen to cocoon passengers and keep them separate from their neighbors. Let's take a look at Glassafe, a potential post-COVID-19 economy cabin modification," reported Simple Flying.
Glassafe is a kit-level solution for airlines that can be installed on existing seats to make close passenger seating a reality while abiding by social distancing rules.
The company has also rolled out another concept. It is called Janus, a row of three seats where every middle seat is positioned backwards.
As shown in this view, Janus has a "wrap-around transparent barrier envelopes each passenger, providing a big plastic cocoon that protects from germs, bad breath, and fights for the armrest," said Simple Flying.
The biggest challenge at the moment for major airlines is to make customers feel safe in a closed environment. And perhaps by restructuring the cabin with social distancing in mind, plastic shields and backwards seats could be the solution.
We noted on Friday morning that Ryanair CEO Michael O'Leary was unhappy with "idiotic" in-flight social distancing rules. He said Irish authorities forced his planes to eliminate the middle seat to comply with new regulations.
Perhaps O'Leary should give Aviointeriors a call about the Janus seating arrangement…