Feel like sharing a plane with 839 other passengers?

The retail adage “stack ’em high and pack ’em tight” is to be introduced to airlines after plans were announced today for economy-only flights carrying a record-breaking 800 passengers in Airbus A380s.

The French company Air Austral said that it placed orders for two “high density” double-decker A380s with a capacity for 840 seats.

When full, the flights between Paris and the French island of Réunion in the Indian Ocean, where the company is based, will easily involve the most passengers ever to fly in a single aeroplane…

The A380 began commercial flights in 2007 carrying around 500 people. The planes included space-consuming business and first class seating areas complete with showers and bars. But it was safety tested for evacuating more than 800 people before it entered service. With a crew of 20 included, it has been approved to carry up to 873 people.

Air Austral’s plans for no-frills A380s flights will make it the easyJet or Ryanair of super-jumbo travel.

“We are convinced that airplanes with good-priced tickets will help explode traffic figures,” its founder and president Gerard Etheve told Reuters. It said the giant people carrier was aimed at tapping growth in China and India.

I just mentioned this to my wife.

Her response, “There aren’t 800 people I’d want to be on a plane with.”

2 thoughts on “Feel like sharing a plane with 839 other passengers?

  1. Cinaedh says:

    I have a question.

    How often do 800 people want to go to Réunion Island, all at the same time?

    First, 800 people would have to be aware it exists, n’est pas?

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