Monday, July 30, 2018

Innovative Trends On Plane Travel Shared In Interview With eBook Author & Flying Expert

The First & Most Comprehensive Look At The Airplane Flying Experience!

At any given time, up to 5,000 aircraft are in the American skies.   Nearly 10 million passenger flights will take place this year. United States airlines flew a record number of passengers last year -- – 741.6 million domestic and 107.7 million international. So just how are airplanes meeting the needs of today’s traveler?

Jetliner Cabins: Evolution & Innovation,, a new eBook App by Jennifer Coutts Clay, who has over 40 years of experience in the marketing and operational management of airlines, features over 6,000 images, links to 400+ airline-related organizations, revelations from dozens of international experts, and hundreds of pages of insightful text that showcases a unique perspective on airline branding, interior cabin design, and the passenger experience.  Providing both a historical record and futuristic crystal ball, Jetliner Cabins is unique and unlike any other book or app concerning aviation and transportation.

Clay worked for British Airways and Pan American World Airways.  The Fulbright Scholar has consulted airlines for the past three decades as the principal of J. Clay Consulting. 

I am so pleased to be involved in promoting her work for Here is an interview with her:

1.      What do you see in the near future for the aviation industry as it relates to the comfort of air travel?  Current upgrades in cabin design include: ergonomically constructed seat-frames, climate-controlled seat-cover fabrics, lumbar-supporting contoured seat-foam inserts, LED ‘mood’ lighting, improved air quality, bigger overhead bins for carry-on bags, larger windows, dimmable window-panes, advance ordering of food and beverage, endless In-Flight Entertainment options, Wi-Fi enablement, in-seat power supply, onboard streaming of program content.    

2.      When you began working at British Airways in the 1970’s, could you have imagined the state of air travel in 2018?   In the 1970s we did not imagine that nearly 4 billion passengers would be flying on the scheduled airlines in 2018.    The general situation was less stressful in the 1970s: Passenger Load Factors (PLFs) used to be around 65% or 70%.  We did not envisage PLFs averaging close to 85%, as we see today: this means that many aircraft are now flying completely full, a lot of the time. 
3.      What else could airlines do to make air travel a more enjoyable experience?  Airlines have to tackle the problems of stressed-out passengers and increased passenger expectations.  There is a need for more personalization, humanization, interesting experiences and warmth of welcome.  With ever-longer flights airlines need to provide more options for how the time can be used onboard the aircraft.  To ensure their well-being, passengers need to be encouraged to move around the aircraft: ideally, they should be able to socialize in lounges, work in business areas, visit an exercise station, and then take a nice shower.  

4.      Which airlines, domestically and internationally, provide the best value – some combination of price, scheduling, convenience, and comfort in travel?  Surveys show that in USA Alaska Airlines, JetBlue and Southwest have achieved amazingly strong loyalty levels because customers feel these airlines provide top-class value for money.  Of the international carriers, Air New Zealand, Qantas and Singapore Airlines have always been rated very highly.  And some Low-Cost Carriers (LCCs) have achieved cult status because of their low fares – but not for reasons of seat comfort e.g. Air Asia, EasyJet, Ryanair.      

5.      How are airlines making air travel more accessible and enjoyable to those with special needs?     Recent advances include aisle-size wheelchairs, seat-armrests that can be raised for ease of access to the seat row, in-flight literature in braille, special meals for dietary or medical reasons, privacy curtains for use instead of closing the lavatory doors, and baby-changing facilities in lavatories. 

6.      How has business-class comfort evolved over the years?  The business-class cabins of major long-haul airlines are now more comfortable than many first-class cabins of ten or fifteen years ago.   Passengers can enjoy their individual suites/compartments with stretch-out sleeper-seats, meal services on demand, cocktail bars and myriad entertainment options.   This is the result of “trickle-down product upgrades”.  
7.      Has the gap between first-class luxury and economy-class grown bigger or smaller over the years? How so?  Bigger. In the first-class cabins of the “gold-standard” long-haul airlines the current levels of luxury are unparalleled in the history of aviation. There are celebrity-quality standards of comfort and privacy.  By contrast, economy-class cabins have become more cramped and crowded than ever before.   

8.      Airlines have made improvements to fight terrorism, reduce pilot error, and provide cost-efficient, on-time flights, but they also have managed to charge for basics such as blankets and checked bags. They have long done away with free meals and the seats have gotten narrower while security lines slow everything down. How would you rate today’s flying experience? We are looking at the evolution of economy-class travel.  By “unbundling” their fares, airlines are providing a more transparent selling platform.  Passengers can make their own individual decisions for their own reasons.  The “moderns” and “millennials” appreciate this approach.  Yes, some security lines are slow, but they are not controlled by the airlines.  Who would want to fly on an aircraft without the security screening process?

9.      Take us back to the glory days of aviation. What made those days special?  In the early days of air travel most passengers were relatively wealthy or “special” for some reason.  They dressed in their best clothes to fly.  At the airports they were welcomed personally.  Aircraft cabins were not crowded.  Flight attendants were thrilled to have glamor-style jobs working for airlines.  In USA pioneering airlines such as Braniff, Eastern, Pan Am and TWA became aviation legends: they opened up the world of international travel, “the infinite highway of the air …” (Wilbur Wright).    

10.  What will next-generation aircrafts provide to fliers?  It seems that next-generation aircraft will be supersonic jets, along the lines of Concorde.  There might be ecological developments e.g. there might be electric-powered or solar-powered aircraft or flying cars using bio-fuels.  There might be operationally more-efficient versions of the current new-generation aircraft types e.g. the Boeing 787 Dreamliner, Airbus A380 and A350; the Bombardier C Series; the Embraer E-Jets and other regional jets.  

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Brian Feinblum’s insightful views, provocative opinions, and interesting ideas expressed in this terrific blog are his alone and not that of his employer or anyone else. You can – and should -- follow him on Twitter @theprexpert and email him at He feels much more important when discussed in the third-person. This is copyrighted by BookMarketingBuzzBlog © 2018. Born and raised in Brooklyn, he now resides in Westchester. His writings are often featured in The Writer and IBPA’s Independent.  This was named one of the best book marketing blogs by Book Baby and recognized by Feedspot in 2018 as one of the top book marketing blogs. Also named by as a "best resource.” He recently hosted a panel on book publicity for Book Expo America and participated in a PR panel at the Sarah Lawrence College Writers Institute Conference.

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