Writers love to tell us that the journey is the destination, but when you're crammed in an economy seat on a long-haul flight sandwiched between a screaming baby and a chatty person, you'd give anything to make the journey shorter. One person making journeys a million times more comfortable is Dave Spurlock, the founder of EOS Airlines. EOS flies between New York's JFK and London's Stansted Airport on a fleet of 757 planes which have been reconfigured to have just 48 business-class seats. Each passenger gets a whopping 21 square feet of space per person and seats fully recline to form a 6-foot 6-inch bed. In flight, guests are pampered with a four course gourmet meal, blankets, a turn down service with chocolates, and Bose noise-cancellation headphones. Best of all, passengers can arrive at the airport 45 minutes before departure to maximize their time.
your inspiration for creating EOS?
The sheer fact that no one else had created a special aircraft for long-haul flights and premium customers. If you look at retail brands, you have all segments of the market covered. There's Tiffany and Cartier and Porsche at the luxury end and Wal-Mart at the mass market level and plenty of things in the middle, but that's not the case with the airline industry. We wanted to create an airline that catered to the premium long haul passengers, and we wanted to start from scratch with the design.
important was design to the creation of EOS
Enormously. We started designing the interior of the plane first. EOS designed its own product which is unheard of for a start-up airline. We won the Red Dot award for our seat design in 2006.
If you had
to fly another airline, which one would you
I'm a very loyal person so I'd choose British Airways as I used to work there. They do a good job serving first class customers in an aircraft where they are serving 400 others.
your pet peeves about flying?
Number one pet peeve is space. In real estate it's all about location, location, location and on a long haul flight its space, space, space. On a long haul flight you need enough space to have privacy and to create your own area.
What are your pet peeves about flying?
Two, I'm sensitive
to layout. I find it disconcerting if it's too crowded. Aircrafts
are some of the densest areas you are ever in.
Two, I'm sensitive to layout. I find it disconcerting if it's too crowded. Aircrafts are some of the densest areas you are ever in.
inefficiencies in the journey, such as how long it takes to
disembark. On EOS its takes five minutes to disembark and it's
all down to the staff. At EOS it's very rare to ever see a
Three, the inefficiencies in the journey, such as how long it takes to disembark. On EOS its takes five minutes to disembark and it's all down to the staff. At EOS it's very rare to ever see a line.
What do you always pack when you travel?
I pack as light as possible. I travel so much that I take pride in minimising what I take.
essentials are every newspaper known to man. I spend the first
hour or so reading, if I remember to pack a book, and going
through my Blackberry.
My in-flight essentials are every newspaper known to man. I spend the first hour or so reading, if I remember to pack a book, and going through my Blackberry.
Where is the
last place you visited?
With three young children I'm not doing a lot of personal travelling. The last place I visited was Molokai in Hawaii. It has the best beach in the world. Hmmm I don't know. We've been to Cape Town and Tanzaniaabout a half dozen times and I love it.
What do you
buy when travelling?
Gifts for my wife.
Are you an
I'm a complete, 100% impulse buyer.
you bought that you regret?
I can't think of anything off the top of my head except for dozens of adaptors. I don't have any bronze statues that I've bought on the road or anything.