Fiji Airways has launched a new dining concept, known as Dine on the Ground, to combat waste and improve the flying experience.
As part of the experience, Business Class and Premier passengers will be offered a pre-flight gourmet meal to maximise their rest-time while in the air.
The concept follows research by Fiji Airways which found almost a third (31 per cent) of Aussie passengers regularly skip in-flight meals in favour of some extra shut-eye, and as a result, up to 38 per cent of food was being discarded.
Customer demand leads to Dine on the Ground
Fiji Airways managing director and CEO Andre Viljoen said Dine on the Ground was the result of feedback from customers.
“While the inflight experience has improved dramatically over the years across all airlines, the way in which food is served hasn’t changed too much,” he said.
“By moving the dining experience pre-flight, we’re not only able to offer a premium experience but we’re also able to reduce food waste, while maintaining our excellent in flight catering.”
Business Class and Premier guests taking either a morning or late evening flight out of Nadi will now be invited to enjoy breakfast or dinner at the Fiji Airways Premier Lounge shortly before boarding.
Breakfast guests will enjoy barista-made coffee, made-to-order breakfast items, a full bakery and fresh fruit juices. For dinner, signature dishes designed by Fiji Airways executive in-house and guest chefs are on offer and are complemented by a full service bar and the exclusive ‘Fiji Bean Cart’.
Initiative may help reduce jet-lag
Health and wellness expert Mark Bunn said the initiative has the potential to knock hours off jet-lag.
He recommends passengers eat a decent meal a one to two hours before travelling and eat very flight while in flight.
“By dining on the ground before take-off, you’re giving your body enough time to digest the food – meaning you’ll be more comfortable and more likely to sleep,” said Bunn.
“For medium- and long-haul flights across time-zones, sleeping is the best way to reduce jet-lag. So any initiative that addresses that is welcomed.”
On board, guests will still have access to a light brunch or supper, such as fruit bowls, gourmet panini, fresh salads, tapas and soups.
However, by dining pre-flight the onboard meals better reflect the time of day and allow guests more time for rest and relaxation.