More Leg Room, Free Snacks And Better Biz Class Perks On Springtime Flights

Wintertime brings some hot deals to airline travel, but the industry also gets busy with new products and inventions for the summer rush. When popular destinations slow down, others enjoy a resurgence. No matter you’re going, there is always something new to explore.

From free snacks in economy class to new business class seats in the front of the plane, here is what to expect from airlines in the coming months. For many, it is exciting to see so many benefits return to service.

United Airlines adds free snacks guaranteed family seating to economy class

United is one-upping its own stroopwaffel success with the addition of three new snacks coming this spring behind the main curtain on all flights. The mix of sweet and salty sweets will serve every type of taste bud. On the menu as a drink accompaniment is a new dark chocolate and sea salt chocolate crisp from female-owned Undercover Snacks, a gluten-free and allergy-friendly snack. There’s also an apple and mango fruit bar from That’s It and a more traditional salty snack mix from Summer Harvest, a regular provider of airline snacks.

The airline is also making a concerted effort to avoid charging adults traveling with small children for a seat assignment. They are now assured of the option of being able to sit together, even on basic economy fares.

Condor updates business class, adds Prime Seat option

German-based Condor Airlines counts nearly a dozen U.S. destinations on its route map, and with the introduction of its new Airbus A330neo, it is bringing a new flat-bed business class product to the market with all-aisle access. The new product, available for now on the A330neo only, provides a 6.5-foot fully-flat bed, built-in Bluetooth functionality and even menu upgrades like a freshly boiled egg prepared on the plane during breakfast. Four extra-premium Prime seats in the cabin carry a $200 uptick, but benefit from more space, including a guest seat if the passenger wants to chat with a companion, extra legroom, complimentary pajamas and slippers, free wireless internet and a larger entertainment screen. For those looking for a standard frequent flyer redemption with Condor, Alaska Airlines Mileage Plan is a convenient partner.

Qatar Airways is the official airline of Formula 1

Between now and 2027, both the airline and the racing circuit now have a firm agreement that cements the relationship. Qatar Airways will now be the title sponsor of The Qatar Airways Emilia Romagna Grand Prix, The Qatar Airways Hungarian Grand Prix and The Qatar Airways Qatar Grand Prix, all of which will take place this year. To date, Formula 1 has announced its most robust schedule F1 boasts its most global racing calendar to date with 23 races across 21 countries and five continents.

Delta opens new Sky Club in Kansas City

As part of the city’s new international airport, Delta will be the only airline to offer a lounge in the terminal. The lounge will feature two all-weather Sky Decks (outdoor viewing patios), a full buffet and premium bar. With space for nearly 200 passengers, the lounge is Delta’s newest club in the network. From Kansas City, Delta serves all nine of its domestic hubs. Delta recently opened a new Sky Club at Chicago O’Hare terminal five and is planning a third club for Minneapolis/St. Paul this spring.

LATAM refreshes business class menu

At a time when other Latin American airlines have done away with business class altogether, LATAM is doubling down on the premium cabin. The airline’s executive chef Felipe Gutiérrez is adding emphasis on local products like Pacific Ocean seafood and familiar recipes. The airline works with the region’s only master sommelier Héctor Vergara who pairs meals with the appropriate wine. New meal options include marinated prawns with Campesino cheese and avocado puree as a starter plus lomo saltado (Peruvian fried beef with vegetables) and quinoa risotto for the main dish. Other dishes include grilled tropical fish with macho sauce, and sautéed vegetables or baiao de dois, a Brazilian rice and beans dish with seafood.

Air New Zealand’s new Economy Stretch seats

This new product is more like an extra-legroom economy seat than a premium economy product. On the ultra-long flights that Air New Zealand flies, it can be as valuable as an additional cabin though. These are only available on Boeing 777-300ER flights between Los Angeles and New Zealand for now, but plans are in place to add the Houston route soon. Passengers in these seats benefit from all the same services of economy class passengers, but also receive a 39% bonus in leg room space and 35 inches of seat pitch. Free advance seat selection is also part of the $109 surcharge. This is available for flights starting Feb. 27.