Q400 First Class Retrofit Update

Discussion in 'United Airlines | MileagePlus' started by UA Insider, Dec 22, 2011.  |  Print Topic

  1. UA Insider
    • Original Member

    UA Insider Official Representative

    Hi Everyone,

    As promised a few months back, we’ve begun the process of adding First Class to our Colgan-operated Q400 fleet. The first aircraft was introduced earlier this week (N323NG, aircraft 821). We expect to be complete with this retrofit by late next summer, and will be focusing on one aircraft base at a time, with northeast-based aircraft as our first priority. As each base is completed, or close to it, we will introduce the First Class product on these aircraft and begin selling First Class in the advance period. Until then, however, the scenario where First Class equipped aircraft begin to show up in advance of us offering a First Class product on these aircraft will be a common one. Here are a few good things to know during this interim period:

    · All flights will be sold as a single cabin (Economy Class) aircraft. During this interim period we won’t yet have First Class service on these flights. Although some aircraft will have the First Class seats, you can expect Economy Class standards for food, beverage, and service to apply.

    · Before check-in, seat maps on both reconfigured and non-reconfigured aircraft will be treated the same. Specifically, this means some seats in the first few rows will disappear from the advance seat map to ensure we minimize re-seating complications. It also means seats in these rows will show up as Economy preferred seating and Economy Extra Legroom seats. If you're able to snag a seat in rows 1, 2 or 3 and a reconfigured aircraft is assigned to your flight during this interim period, you will get to enjoy the larger seat.

    · Upgrades will not be applicable until we begin selling First Class on these flights. In this interim period, when we will be treating these seats as preferred and extra legroom seats, First Class upgrades will not apply. This includes mileage reward upgrades, complimentary Elite upgrades, instant Elite upgrades and revenue buy-up upgrades.

    · Beware or pre-assigning into rows 1, 2, or 3 too far in advance. If you pre-assign into row 1, 2 or 3, prior to us offering First Class on these flights, and we then subsequently introduce First Class, we’ll do our best to reaccomodate you to a comparable preferred Economy Class seat. These logisticsare still being worked out, but wanted to make sure you were aware.

    Also worth noting, within the next few months, we will also be adding Economy Plus to our Q400 fleet. We’ll keep you posted on any changes as we progress through the remainder of the fleet.

    Shannon Kelly
    Director, Customer Insights
    United Airlines
    snod08, chrislacey, jupper and 11 others like this.
  2. OnTehWings
    • Original Member

    OnTehWings Gold Member

    Thank you for sharing this with us as always Shannon, now I can look forward to F on the Q400s.
  3. ssullivan
    • Original Member

    ssullivan Gold Member

    Thanks for the update!

    If anyone is curious about what the new seat map looks like for this aircraft, I found the newly reconfigured plane operating flight 4861, EWR-ALB, tomorrow. Here's a screenshot of the seat map.

    AZjohn likes this.
  4. AZjohn

    AZjohn Silver Member

    Thanks for explaining the "rules of the UG game" to us Shannon ;)
    • Original Member

    TAHKUCT Gold Member

    Thanks for sharing
  6. Seacarl
    • Original Member

    Seacarl Gold Member

    With the addition for F and Y+ I think the Q400 will be a fine substitute for the CRJ-200's and even CRJ-700's on shorter flights. I don't much care for the CRJ-200 because there are no seats with decent legroom, but the CRJ-700's with F and Y+ are bearable (the larger eJets are better).

    Too bad the Y+ additions aren't being done at the same time.

    But I hope these changes will mean as CRJ-200's are phased out due to fuel burn, that at least for shorter routes service can be retained by substituting Q400s.
    TAHKUCT likes this.
  7. Pizzaman
    • Original Member

    Pizzaman Co-founder

    I'm impressed by the detail in how this will be rolled out. Seems pretty reasonable to me.
  8. cova

    cova Gold Member

    Bottom line - if you are booked on a Q400 - during transition - don't reserve seats 1B, 2B, 3B or you could lose your seat - if a new configuration gets assigned to that route.
    mht_flyer and TAHKUCT like this.
  9. KenInEscazu

    KenInEscazu Gold Member

    This is one of those things that really gives value to being a member of this site. I went straight to the one Q400 res I have just to make sure that I was in one of those seats that will be converted in case my April flight to Providence is on a plane with the new seats. I was already in 2A, but now I know I'm safe.

    Thanks for the great info!
    TAHKUCT likes this.
  10. mht_flyer
    • Original Member

    mht_flyer Gold Member

    Well I was in 1B and of course the new config came up on my BOS-EWR,

    I volunteered for a bump if there is a oversell but doesn't seem that is going to happen.

    Good news I got 2C though, guess it was empty :)

    I'll take some photos :)
    Rob and Golfingboy like this.
  11. TXHolmes

    TXHolmes Active Member

    This is great news, and thanks so much for providing so much detail on the roll out process. I have noticed an uptick in the prevalence of Q400 flights from AUS-IAH, which I fly quite often, so this is particularly useful info!
  12. Jslo
    • Original Member

    Jslo Gold Member

    Thanks for the update Shannon! Happy New Year to you.
  13. mht_flyer
    • Original Member

    mht_flyer Gold Member

    So with all the computer problems happening lately at CO I'd like to show something positive. I was able to enjoy 2C as a "coach" seat the other day from EWR-BOS on my way home from YYT.

    The Q400 seats are smaller than say the first class seats on E70/75/90 but they are still comfortable and a nice upgrade for a turbo-prop. This is a change I like.

    Here's two pictures I put on twitter, I have more pictures but I'm only using iCloud on iphone + ipad and not on my Mac (still have snow leopard installed).

    So here are two basic pictures.

    singleseatQ400.jpg q400_first.jpg
    theBOAT, Golfingboy, J.Edward and 9 others like this.
  14. genemk2

    genemk2 Gold Member

    Thanks for the pictures! I've never flown on a Q400 before -- are those bins capable of holding a roll-aboard?
    mht_flyer likes this.
  15. tjtenor4
    • Original Member

    tjtenor4 Gold Member

    Nope - my Kata 3n1-33 backpack is the absolute largest thing (IME) that can be jammed in there... and that takes some jamming, when it's full.
    cheepneezy, Tinkerer and TAHKUCT like this.
  16. SS255
    • Original Member

    SS255 Silver Member

    Kewl. I'm on one of these birds on Monday. I hope it's THIS bird!
    mht_flyer likes this.
  17. ssullivan
    • Original Member

    ssullivan Gold Member

    It depends. On the NG series Q400s, the bins are somewhat larger and will hold some roller bags.
  18. tjtenor4
    • Original Member

    tjtenor4 Gold Member

    Oh really?? Hunh. Aren't all of CO's Q400s NG-series? Also, the only roll-aboard I've traveled with for the past 10+ years is a 22" one, so it always gets checked plane-side on every RJ/prop except for the E170s (which it thankfully does fit in)... so yeah, maybe a smaller one would fit. Good point.
  19. ssullivan
    • Original Member

    ssullivan Gold Member

    No, the NG Q400s are only about half the fleet. The original deliveries are the non-NG aircraft. The 2010 and newer deliveries are the NG aircraft, with larger overheads, and redesigned lighting and ceiling panels.

    An easy way to tell the difference with the Colgan Q400s is the NG series aircraft have registration numbers that end in "NG." The non-NG aircraft have registrations that end with "WQ."
    chrislacey and tjtenor4 like this.
  20. tjtenor4
    • Original Member

    tjtenor4 Gold Member

    Cool! Learn something every day :)
  21. ssullivan
    • Original Member

    ssullivan Gold Member

    Bombardier claims the NG Q400 overhead bins will hold roller bags that are up to 10.5" tall and 16" deep when lying on their backs in the bins. I have a 22" bag that fits those dimensions if not overstuffed, but so far I've not tried fitting it in one of those bins. This link has an illustration of how the larger bins and their dimensions.
    tjtenor4 and OnTehWings like this.
  22. J.Edward
    • Original Member

    J.Edward Silver Member

    Thanks for posting those!
    mht_flyer likes this.
  23. chrislacey
    • Original Member

    chrislacey Milepoint Guide


    Now that the retrofit project is progressing...do you have any more details on the timeline? For example, when will EWR's Q400s be completed...and when will these flights shift to a true F/Y offering? I'm just curious how far out I can book rows 1-3 and not have to worry about changing them (or getting booted out) later.

  24. United Connection

    United Connection Silver Member

    This is true with the exception of the starboard bins in F. My B&R 20" widebody fits just fine in those.

    For those interested, 2CD are probably the most desirable F seats, given they are actually an exit row. Legroom is very substantial compared to the rest of the cabin.
    Billiken likes this.
  25. cvarming
    • Original Member

    cvarming Silver Member

    Does anyone have an idea of when they will start selling these seats?

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