Tigerair Australia will add an extra six seats to its Boeing 737-800 fleet with the installation of new slimline seats.
The cabin reconfiguration program with the leather seats from Rockwell Collins Interior Systems (formerly B/E Aerospace) is due to begin in March 2018, Tigerair said on Thursday.
As a result, the seat count on the 737-800 fleet will increase to 186, from 180 currently. The cabin layout includes five rows of extra legroom seats at the front of the aircraft that are available for an extra fee.
Tigerair said in a statement there would be “no impact on passenger and crew space and comfort”, with seat pitch, the size of the galley and restrooms remaining the same.
Thursday’s announcement will ensure Tigerair maintains parity with local LCC rival Jetstar in the Australian domestic market.
In May, Jetstar said it would boost the capacity on 43 Australia and New Zealand based A320 narrowbodies by six seats to 186 seats by the end of 2018.
At the time Jetstar said the use of new slimline Recaro seats and the Zodiac Aerospace Space Flex version two lavatory and galley module, which allows for the removal of the existing rear lavatories, had opened up the additional space for an extra row of seats.
The Virgin Australia-owned low-cost carrier (LCC) is in the midst of a three-year transition from Airbus A320s, which have 180 seats, to the Boeing narrowbody that is due to be completed in 2019. Currently, Tigerair has three 737s in its fleet alongside 14 A320s.
While the A320s are slated for removal, Tigerair said it would begin installing equipment to enable passengers to watch movies and television programs streamed to their own devices across all its aircraft over the coming weeks.
The airline said it had signed a content deal with Twentieth Century Fox Film Corporation (TCFF) and Fox Networks Group (FNG), while the streaming technology is being supplied by ViaSat.
Passengers would be able to watch movies and other programs via the Tigerair Australia app on their mobile device or on laptops for a fee, with movies costing $6 and television shows $2. Music and some destination-based content will be offered free.
A glance through the October program guide shows movies such as Hidden Figures, Snatched and Captain Underpants: The First Epic Movie are on offer, while the selection of television programs included Empire, Modern Family and Wild Australia.
Tigerair said it would be the only Australian LCC to offer inflight entertainment across its entire domestic fleet once the installation program was complete.
“The planned partnership with Twentieth Century Fox and Fox Networks Group open up a new world of entertainment for our customers, whilst our new leather, slimline seats will in my view, provide the most comfortable low-cost economy seats in the sky,” Tigerair Australia commercial director Andrew Maister said in a statement.
“These products complement each other really well, enabling our customers to enjoy a meal/drink and superior entertainment product inflight more comfortably than ever before.”