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Airline exec wants to stick passengers in the cargo hold

Alan Joyce, chief executive officer of Australian airline Qantas Airways raised the idea of someday using the cargo hold for a new class of cabin, where some passengers could sleep in large pods and exercise. ( More...

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Chris Bryant 18
In the old cruise ship days, wasn't that called "steerage"? :)
Martin Haisman 10
Instead if diverting flights due to unruly passengers I would just throw them in the brig. Then we can enjoy coffee and bad food.
panam1971 3
You are quite correct.
Maybe Uber will have self driving pod mobiles to pick you up at home, let you get in your pod and deliver you straight to the cargo hold. That way you never miss a moment of Facebook.
Ken Hardy 5
Fits right in with the Millenniums age of implanted smart phones
Shenghao Han 3
Not a new idea, years ago (in the dawn of jet age) there were ideas of "air bus". Where a Simi truck like bus come to pick you up in cities, then drive to the airport, then the passenger compartment detaches like a cargo container, and straight attached to the air frame.
This idea had been revived after 2000s where people suggestion that way there will be no chance of hijacking and in case of emergency, parachutes can bring the passenger comparment down safely.
Ultimatly, because the extra mechnisum will cause the overall weight become very uneconimal and complicated, these idea never left the paper...
Mike Mohle 4
Funny! Like a freight forwarder.
Torsten Hoff 9
Is it April 1st already?
shrudini 0
Highflyer1950 8
The old PSA L-1011’s had the fwd cargo hold refitted for about 22 pax including a lower internal airstair. It required an additional reinforced metal skid attached to the lower body hull for pax protection. Also added a lot more weight to the airframe. No windows but a great party room!
Mike Mohle 6
Sounds awesome. A private pallet-sized compartment with bed for 20 hours. Bring it on! Next trip to Auckland I will bring the wife.
AWAAlum 1
20 hours in a pallet-size compartment - meal service should be interesting. Plus further training of FAs in order to talk down the sky rocketing increase in claustrophobic episodes. Maybe we can look into suspended animation Mr. Joyce?
sparkie624 1
MRE's! :)
Bernie20910 1
Yes, but how well are you stretching out in your 36" long bed? (Pillows, sheets, and blankets optional at extra cost, all major credit cards accepted)
Mike Mohle 1
Good thing I am short. :)
Let's be real here, flights are super long now, especially Australia. Window shades are down most of the time, lavatories are shared anyway. Think Tokyo Hotel Pod. As long as there is an upstairs dining area, why would one not want to travel super relaxed and reduce jetlag through rest. I would jump on it in a heartbeat. Much more comfortable than folding lie flat seats for sure.
Randy Shereda 3
If it means that I can lay down for a few hours on a long flight - I would gladly trade a window seat for this!
royr2 2
It sounds absurd now, but this is going to be a recurring discussion within these next few years. We are putting out planes that can fly farther than they ever have before without refueling, with the 787 and A350 almost capable of going around the entire world non-stop (in certain conditions and configurations). As airlines start to take advantage of ultra long-distance markets, they are going to start exploring configurations and features never thought of before. It all boils down to human beings aren't meant to sit in a crappy economy seat for 20 hours. So they're going to start exploring ways to alleviate the natural stresses of the human body during long-distance flight.
patrick baker 2
What- no windows, and where is the toilet? are we there yet?
alan75035 2
Catheterization. Diapers.
jbermo 2
Remember when UPS briefly flew charter passengers in its freighter aircraft during weekends? About 25 years ago around the mid 90's I think.
didn't tom hanks get stranded on an island for a few years coz one crashed?
Highflyer1950 2
FedEx DC10 or MD11.
sparkie624 2
LOL... I had forgotten about that.
My wife and I flew a UPS B-727-100 flight like that from Orlando to Aruba on 23 August 98, FLT 5513 and back on 30 August 98, FLT 5514. If you flew on Braniff or Eastern QC models it was the same as flying UPS. They were freighters at night and hauled PAX during the day.

Every time I flew with Evergreen DC-9-30, on FLT 201, DAY-MEM-DFW-IAH Emery Freight run We would park next to all the Braniff containers loaded with thier different color seats...Take care....Fred
Alan Hume 2
For a 20-hr non-stop flight it's not that dumb. These would be Business Class rated pods ... not straw and bales! Alan Joyce is the CEO of Qantas and he has been pushing for non-stop Sydney - New York flight capability for years. He envisages them being used on a rotational basis for 2-4 hours at a time by various passengers who would like to stretch out for a while and get some quality sleep. Qantas has just begun 17-hr non-stop flights from Perth, Western Australia (and the most remote capital city in the world) to London. You northern hemisphere types just don't get it.
Bernie20910 3
Yeah, I'm not hot bunking after the guy with the runny nose and cough gets out. The same goes for the one that thinks a whole can of Axe body spray is as good as bathing, the lady whose hair looks like it was styled by British Petroleum, or the kid with severe acne.
paul trubits 1
Comedy writing 101: The rule of threes. Google Johnnie Carson. You went to the well one too many times. You will do better next time I am sure.
Jim Prevo 1
That sounds like a great way to add a lot of members to the mile high club!
Open the pod bay door, Al...
bagoong 1
21voyageur 1
Oh I am just positive that the Board of Directors of Qantas and the Australian public will love to hear such un-thought out nonsense. This is about profits for shareholders period. After all, he was speaking at a Chamber of Commerce gathering. And he has the gall to butter things up with statements such as “Instead of thinking about exercise rooms and luxury berths for its elite passengers, maybe Qantas should find ways of giving all of its customers a humane amount of legroom." Give me a break Mr. Joyce, try some transparency. Seems there must be something in the Irish water as he is starting to sound like Michael O'Leary
Benjamin Taub 0
So, is there a problem with profit? Without the possibility of profits, there would be no airlines as no one would invest. And, is an uncomfortable seat to somewhere in the world that you could otherwise not afford a bad thing? The customer can decide if he wants the product and, if being uncomfortable isn't worth the price of the ticket + the experience of being somewhere else, he won't buy the product.

I hate uncomfortable flights as much as anyone but I do have an option of paying 2 - 4x the price to make them comfortable (in first class) but I forgo that option. To exist, airlines must be profitable. So, we can either have more comfort with less flights and much higher costs for every flight OR we can have today's situation with lower prices, more options, and higher costs only for those willing and able to bear the burden. I think the choice is pretty clear.
21voyageur 1
No problem with profits at all, but please don't mask your intentions with a feel good caring need to consider this.
Doesn't the A340-600 have a basement?
Wao! That must have been a special kind of flight.
a1brainiac 1
What took them so long to come up with this brilliant idea ? Belly landings could be a little tricky for those in steerage...
21voyageur 1
hahaha. Expendable I am assuming or could be upsold to those paying full fare above them as having great airbags below them in case of a belly landing.
And a water landing would be interesting.
AWAAlum 1
I wonder - shouldn't a "water landing" be called a "water watering"?
Aero Peru used to do that on the Lockheed 1011 back in the 70's!I believe it was a lounge in the forward cargo area.
Highflyer1950 1
used PSA L1011.
21voyageur 1
Are you serious? Tell us more! You are not talking about stowaways, are you???? ;-{)
billtanksley 1
Hey, the Lockheed L-1011-1 that was used by Delta Air Lines and Eastern Air Lines for their domestic service had the main galley located in the forward cargo hold, forward of the main landing gear. It had 2 elevators that went to the mid-galley above, and a separate loading door for the catering truck on the right side of the fuselage. PSA, as mentioned elsewhere, turned this into a lounge on it's L-1011s. So the idea is not new by a long shot.
sparkie624 0
I thought All L-1011's were equipped that way.
n9341c 1
WARNING: #FAKEARTICLE with purposely shocker headline.
You won't read a thing about "sticking passengers in the cargo hold". You WILL read about comments by an exec to convert existing cargo hold into sleeping areas, exercise, rooms, etc.
sparkie624 1
LOL... I have seen some passengers that I would like to stick back there... Box them up, strap them down, Close the door.. LOL... Nice thought, but all jokes aside!, this guy is going over the top.
This was a reply to a reader who thought UPS used freighters to fly PAX on weekends...

My wife and I flew a UPS B-727-100 flight like that from Orlando to Aruba on 23 August 98, FLT 5513 and back on 30 August 98, FLT 5514. If you flew on Braniff or Eastern QC models it was the same as flying UPS. They were freighters at night and hauled PAX during the day. Every time I flew with Evergreen DC-9-30, on FLT 201, DAY-MEM-DFW-IAH Emery Freight run We would park next to all the Braniff containers loaded with thier different color seats...Take care....Fred
chalet 1
I wonder how many pints of some strong stuff he downed before making this absolutely cotton-picking idea.
Get a life...Pan Am, United, B.O.A.C, Northwest and American overseas all had cocktail lounges in their cargo holds on the was really cool....I'm 79 and they wouldn't kids down there to drink...Dammit....its was the only way to fly.....
Chris B 1
Qantas was doing quite well this week until this Ryanair like statement.
JenOscroft 1
It doesn't sound absurd. I'd welcome it as it would mean I could fly with pets instead of people. At least the company would be nice.. and stretch out and lay down to sleep!
It's going to happen in any case. No one will be forced to use it (although that can also be imagined. e.g. long haul con transportation).
Randy Michel -1
What would the new class be called? Scum Class? Instead of seats, would it have wooden benches and straw on the floor? Sounds like Mr. Joyce also watched what Clarkson, Hammond, and May did with the train out of camper trailers on Top Gear.
AAaviator 0
Perfect place to put all kids under 5 - and any adult who still throws tantrums.
Jon Herd 0
That was an April Fool’s gag, folks.

Jetstar did the same thing last year.
shrudini -4
Dumb idea.


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