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Difference Between Business Class and Premium Economy

Airlines are now making it easier for customers to experience better services such as better food, other luxuries and more comfort by offering Premium Economy and Business Class. Once customers experience this comfort, it is hard to go back to Economy Class, as the added costs make the experience worth every penny. Most people, however, do not understand the difference between Business Class and Premium Economy, as discussed below. 

What is Business Class?

Introduced in the 1970s, this is the class between economy class and first class distinguished by the quality and level of seating, entertainment, food, drinks, ground service among other amenities. 

It is characterized by;

  • High comfort seating options with more legroom such as recliner seats, angled lie-flat seats, fully flat seats and cabin seats
  • A wide choice of fine dining and finer wines
  • Enhanced in-flight entertainment
  • Priority check-in
  • Dedicated cabins
  • Extra baggage allowance

Some airlines even go a step ahead and offer pick-up and drop services within a certain distance from the airport or have a lounge in the airport where people can get their free food and drinks. 

What is Premium Economy?

First introduced by EVA Air in the early 1990s, this is the class between standard economy and business class offered on some airlines. It has increasingly become popular in the past years especially due to the comfort, amenities and price. 

Some of its characteristics include;

  • 65% cheaper fares as compared to business class
  • It has 5-7 inches of extra legroom, more space to recline and wider seats
  • In-flight entertainment
  • A separate and more interesting food menu  
  • Prioritized check- in

Although these differ among airlines, premium economy has better services as compared to the economy class. 

Similarities between Business class and Premium economy

  • Both offer more comfort and amenities as compared to economy class

Differences between Business class and Premium economy

Pricing

Business-class is more expensive than premium economy by approximately 65%. On the other hand, premium economy is cheaper than business class by approximately 65%. 

Seating

While business class offers high comfort seating options with more legroom such as recliner seats, angled lie-flat seats, fully flat seats and cabin seats, premium economy offers 5-7 inches of extra legroom, more space to recline and wider seats. 

Service

Some services in business class include a wide choice of fine dining and finer wines, enhanced in-flight entertainment, priority check-in, dedicated cabins and extra baggage allowance. On the other hand, some services in the premium economy include in-flight entertainment, a separate and more interesting food menu and prioritized check-in. 

Aim

While business class offers a high level of luxury, premium economy offers an improved comfort experience. 

Business-class vs. Premium economy: Comparison Table

Summary of Business Class vs. Premium Economy

Business-class refers to the class between economy class and first class. Although it’s more expensive, it offers high comfort seating options with more legroom such as recliner seats, angled lie-flat seats, fully flat seats and cabin seats not to mention a high level of luxury. On the other hand, premium economy is the class between standard economy and business class. It offers an improved comfort experience by providing improved services such as in-flight entertainment, a separate and more interesting food menu and prioritized check-in. 

Travellers should, however, note that the level of services differs among different airlines. 


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References :


[0]Witlox F & Derudder B. International Business Travel in the Global Economy. Routledge Publishers, 2016. https://books.google.co.ke/books?id=Zh03DAAAQBAJ&pg=PA33&dq=Difference+between+business+class+and+premium+economy&hl=en&sa=X&ved=0ahUKEwi75fzhlebpAhVIQRoKHTHGDGwQ6AEIJTAA#v=onepage&q=Difference%20between%20business%20class%20and%20premium%20economy&f=false

[1]Witlox F & Derudder B. International Business Travel in the Global Economy. Routledge Publishers, 2016. https://books.google.co.ke/books?id=Zh03DAAAQBAJ&pg=PA33&dq=Difference+between+business+class+and+premium+economy&hl=en&sa=X&ved=0ahUKEwi75fzhlebpAhVIQRoKHTHGDGwQ6AEIJTAA#v=onepage&q=Difference%20between%20business%20class%20and%20premium%20economy&f=false

[2]L.K. Singh. Foreign Exchange Management And Air Ticketing. Gyan Publishing House, 2008. https://books.google.co.ke/books?id=0FJLzDUUv9AC&dq=Difference+between+business+class+and+premium+economy&source=gbs_navlinks_s

[3]Paul Clark. Buying the Big Jets: Fleet Planning for Airlines. Ashgate Publishing, Ltd., 2007. https://books.google.co.ke/books?id=AY2Ad3aUWmUC&dq=Difference+between+business+class+and+premium+economy&source=gbs_navlinks_s

[4]Image credit: https://commons.wikimedia.org/wiki/File:Philippine_Airlines_premium_economy_A330-300.png

[5]Image credit: https://commons.wikimedia.org/wiki/File:Philippine_Airlines_business_class_A330-300.png

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