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Thomson unveils vision for future air travel

AIR travel is about to turn super-tech as Thomson Airways unveils its vision to “revolutionise holiday flying”.

It promises travellers the ultimate holiday experience from take off until the moment they land back in Britain with planned changes to its fleet including the luxury 787 Dreamliner.

The holiday giant has revealed its five-year vision to “change the face of holiday flying” acquiring two more of Dreamliners  with another 47 new Boeing 737 MAX aircrafts by 2020.

State-of-the art technology features highly in the layout of the crafts while crew equipped with snazzy gadgets promise to make the trip as stress free and enjoyable as possible.

Thomson even claims travellers on the Dreamliner are less likely to suffer jet-lag thanks to fresh air higher in oxygen circulated in the cabins.

David Burling, managing director of parent company TUI said: “Our airline business has traditionally been categorised in the charter sector which is often perceived as the poor relation to scheduled and, in reality, bears little resemblance to the Thomson Airways experience today.

“Our overall goal is to make travel experiences special and, as the flight marks both the start and end of the holiday, we see it as an integral part of the whole holiday experience.

“That is why we want to want to define and lead a new category of flying – the holiday airline category.  

“This describes an airline designed for the specific needs of the holiday maker and fully connected to the holiday experience in the destination.”

The Dreamliner flies higher than standard aircraft with the 43,000 feet cruising altitude reducing journey times and fuel consumption by around 14 per cent.

Crew including the onboard holiday advisor will use iPads which to find information about local attractions, places to eat and travel when asked by passengers.

So confident are they with the standard of technology they promise toto answer any questions both during the flight and after they arrive at their hotel.

This includes favourites, according to Thomson, like what the weather is doing back home and the football results.

Thompson plans to further advance onboard technology to allow customers to check-in to their hotel, upgrade their rooms and make bookings through the entertainment system.

Mr Burling said: “This summer we’ve been trialling a new initiative with our Luton based crew equipping them with iPads so they can share destination information on the flight, give customers the opportunity to make special requests or book excursions and restaurants, and effectively ‘pass the baton’ over to our resort team.  

“And visa versa with the resort team passing the baton back to the crew on the journey home with any special requests.

“The iPads will also have lots of information on our customers so we can personalise our service not only identifying but surprising and delighting our loyal customers and really bringing elements of that holiday experience on-board.

“The Dreamliner is a key part of our strategy to modernise our airline and customers flying experience.  

“The aircraft has really enabled Thomson to grow our long-haul programme by adding new destinations such as Thailand, the Pacific Coast of Mexico and Mauritius.  

“We have also been able to grow capacity fairly significantly in a number of long haul destinations such as Jamaica and Cancun, offering multiple flights a week in many cases which also allows customers more choice in their holiday duration.”

Standout features of the Dreamliner are overhead cabins which have been redesigned to give more headroom giving the cabin an open and less-confined feel.

Windows are also bigger than in a standard jet with the flip-down blinds replaced by button operated dimming system which gradually darkens the glass.

Cabins are equipped with mood lighting controls which can see the plane illuminated in every colour of the spectrum including vibrant red or blue for sleeping.

Changes will be ­introduced when the  fleet of 47 new Boeing 737 MAX jets is delivered from 2018.

Next summer will see new family and child-free zones with ‘couples’ pods’ complete with wine coolers.

Thomson has  unveiled a new direct Dreamliner route from Gatwick to Costa Rica for 2015, and will add flights to , Malaysia, Vietnam and the Caribbean.