Lufthansa, one of the largest airlines in Europe, is trialing a new offer that allows economy passengers to book out several adjacent seats so that they can lie down and sleep without having to shell out for business class. The product, called ‘Sleeper’s Row’, is only available for a limited time on flights between Germany and Brazil, and passengers who pay for this upgrade are also given priority boarding as well as a seat topper and the blanket and pillow used in business class for a more comfortable journey.

Lufthansa’s offer is an innovative way for the airline to try to claw back some of the revenue that’s been lost because of the coronavirus pandemic while airports are seeing low numbers of travelers. The Sleeper’s Row experience will appeal to travelers who are looking to maintain more distance from others on flights.

Economy passengers can enjoy a lie-flat seat © Lufthansa

But it’s not the first airline to offer an interesting experience in economy: Air New Zealand has had a product called Skycouch since 2011, which is a row of three economy class seats that convert into a flat, flexible surface. Earlier this year, the airline unveiled a new economy-cabin design with sleep pods and full-length beds that could be installed on future flights. Aircraft manufacturers and start-ups have also been toying with ideas to make traveling in economy more bearable as well as more COVID-cautious, such as double-decker seat-bed combinations unveiled by Zephyr Aerospace last June.

Sleeper’s Row costs €220 for three seats, or €260 for four seats, on top of the flight price. The offer can only be purchased at the airport during check-in or at the boarding gate and is available only on flights between Frankfurt, Germany, and São Paulo, Brazil until mid-December. The offer is sold on a first-come-first-serve basis.

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