Thomson to offer Costa Rica on Dreamliner as part of expanded network

Thomson Airways will offer the only direct flight from Europe to Costa Rica in November 2015 as part of an expanded network.

Other destinations being considered include St Lucia, Antigua, Bonaire and Curacao in the Caribbean as well as Vietnam and Malaysia.

The new destinations are under consideration as the Tui Travel carrier confirmed two further Boeing 787 Dreamliners in addition to 47 previously announced new generation Boeing 737 MAX aircraft by 2020.

The 737 MAX will enhance the customer experience on short and mid-haul routes.  The aircraft is also expected to be around 14% more fuel efficient than the current 737.

A multi-million pound revamp across the existing 737 and 757 fleet this winter aims to improve comfort levels and service and provide a more contemporary onboard environment.

New concepts being planned over the next five years include bringing the holiday experience to life on the aircraft, helping holidaymakers plan their trips from 43,000 feet and seamlessly connecting the crew with overseas holiday teams.

The airline is planning a ‘family booth’ on the new 737s with seating for four to six people situated at the back of the aircraft around a table.

An onboard kids’ club will see a trained member of the crew help parents keep children entertained with arts, crafts and quizzes that relate to the destination.

A member of the resort team with extensive knowledge of the destination will be on board to offer advice and recommendations to holidaymakers.

New content and channels designed specifically for holidaymakers, including a bedtime story channel, bespoke teenage content and destination inspiration channels on long-haul, are planned as part of the in-flight entertainment.

Further planned enhancements include the ability to make room upgrades, advance check-in and resort excursion bookings through the system.

Tui UK and Ireland managing director David Burling 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 holidaymaker and fully connected to the holiday experience in the destination.

“We’ll achieve this by continuing to invest in our fleet, in state-of-the-art aircraft like the 787 Dreamliner and 737 MAX, in our on-board technology connecting the flight experience to that in resort and in product and service innovations that are entirely relevant to the holidaymaker both today and tomorrow.”

Sourced from Travel Weekly

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