Lonely Planet Writer

Tight squeeze! Airbus reveals plans to add an extra seat per row on the A380

 The Airbus A380 is already the biggest passenger plane in the world, but it could get a lot more packed inside if the airlines goes ahead with a new idea.

The company this week revealed a potential new seating plan that would squeeze as many as 70 additional customers on board.

Airbus A380
Airbus A380

If the company goes ahead with its plans, revealed at the ILA Berlin Air Show, economy seats on the A380 would be redesigned with 11 passengers in almost every row instead of 10 abreast as it stands currently.

The reason for the change is financial; the change could raise $23million as it would add 23 seats to each plane with a middle seat in the middle section of most economy class rows on the double-decker plane – but yes, that would mean there would be a “middle” middle seat.

Still, Airbus say the standard seat width would remain the same.

The budget economy class as it looks now
The budget economy class as it looks now

And it’s not just economy that would be affected. Airlines could add 18 premium economy seats by moving that cabin downstairs, and removing wall storage upstairs would mean ten more business class seat-beds could be accommodated.

Airbus_infographic_A380_Asia_Pacific_Feb_2016

Airbus has tried to go down this route in the past, but airlines weren’t interested at the time. 180 A380s are currently in operation by 13 airlines.