The Breeze Airways A220-300 “Nicest” seats are worth it! Here’s why…

The Breeze Airways A220-300 “Nicest” seats are worth it! Here’s why…

Prior to trying the “Nicest” seat on the Breeze Airways A220-300, I wasn’t really sure how to classify it. Is it business class? Or is it premium economy?

After experiencing it on a 5 1/2 hour flight from Richmond (Virginia) to San Francisco, I can tell you with absolute certainty that it is not business class. The lack of proper food and in-flight entertainment options makes it a budget premium economy experience at best.

The seats absolutely lived up to their name however. They were by far the nicest on the whole airplane.

MX116
Richmond, VA (RIC) – San Francisco, CA (SFO)
Wednesday, August 24, 2022
Aircraft: A220-300
Registration: N206BZ
Duration: 5 hours 15 minutes
Seat: 5F (“Nicest” Seat)

Breeze Airways A220-300 side view
Breeze Airways A220-300 side view illustration by NorebboStock.com.
mx116 flight track
Our route from Richmond to San Francisco this morning as MX116.

The video

Ever since Breeze Airways announced that they were putting premium seats in their new Airbus A220 aircraft, I couldn’t wait to make a video about it. I had a lot of fun making my last Breeze Airways video, so even before going into this, I knew it was going to be a good time.

Normally I’d have a hard time condensing a 5 1/2 hour flight into a video of 12 minutes or less. However, the lack of onboard service made this relatively easy. Don’t give me wrong – it was a great flight, but a bit lacking in the amenities.

My full review of the Breeze Airways A220-300 “Nicest” seat

Breeze Airways is a low-cost carrier with a focus on smaller secondary cities (mostly). They launched their Richmond to San Francisco service earlier this year, and it is currently the longest route in the Breeze Airways network. I figured it would be the best opportunity for me to see what the Breeze Airways “Nicest” seat is all about.

Arrival at the Richmond International Airport

I arrived at the Richmond Airport at precisely 6:02 AM for the 8 AM flight to San Francisco. It’s a midsize Airport which is very easy to access, so I can tell you that arriving two hours before your flight is beyond overkill. I needed to get footage for this review though, so that’s my excuse.

Richmond airport exterior at night
Having flown into RIC yesterday afternoon in Delta 757-200 first class from Atlanta, I already knew how nice this airport is. That still didn’t stop me from taking a ridiculous amount of pictures of it before going back inside though.
Breeze airways entrance Richmond airport
I’ll spare you those pics since this a Breeze Airways review and not an airport review – but I can assure you that it kills me not to post ‘em up. This is a beautiful airport!

FYI, Breeze Airways uses Terminal A at the Richmond Airport

Terminal A is the smaller of the two terminals at RIC, but still a decent place to hang out before a flight. There are plenty of food options, as well as lots of quiet nooks and crannies you can dip into to get away from the crowds.

Breeze airways ticketing and check in Richmond airport
Imagine how disappointed the Breeze Airways management team must have felt when they found out that their check in area at RIC was going to be located adjacent to the Spirit check in area. You win some, you lose some I guess.
Richmond airport terminal A check in area
Seriously, this is a really nice airport terminal.
Richmond international airport sign main terminal
One final reminder of where you are before proceeding through the security checkpoint (it’s easy to forget this early in the morning). 
Inside terminal A Richmond international airport
Going through security took all of 3 minutes, but…where am I again?
Richmond mural terminal A RIC airport
Oh that’s right. Thank goodness for the reminder!
Breeze Airways a220-300 N206BZ at RIC
Here’s the A220-300 that will be taking me to SFO this morning (it just arrived from Tampa). Such a beautiful airplane!
Breeze Airways a220-300 N206BZ parked at gate Richmond airport
Looks like it’s N206BZ doing the honors today. It’s (by far) the bluest airplane I’ve ever flown to San Francisco on.

The boarding process for flight number 116 to San Francisco

The plane operating our flight to San Francisco this morning came in from Tampa. This was just a short stopover, and it didn’t take them long to freshen it up and restock it for the relatively long haul out to the West Coast.

It’s not like I was timing it right down to the second, but if I had to guess, it felt like 22(ish) minutes from the time they parked at the gate to the start of the boarding process for San Francisco. Nice.

Breeze Airways mobile boarding pass
Just as how fun it is when “the carpet matches the drapes,” it’s nice to see that the boarding pass matches the plane. 
Gate A5 Richmond airport
By the way, nobody here at the gate appreciated that joke as much as I did. Oh well.
Richmond airport jet bridge gate A5
Ok, here we go! My last flight on an A220-300 (Delta A220-300 economy from Denver to Salt Lake City) was far too long ago. I’m very much looking forward to getting back on one of these airplanes again.
SANspotter walking down Richmond airport jet bridge
It’ll also be my first time experiencing what the A220 was made for (long / thin routes), so the pressure is on to make this a thorough review!
Breeze airways a220-300 boarding door
Boarding door picture complete. Awkward “shuffling through the aisle trying to find my seat” pics are up next…

My first impressions of the Breeze Airways A220-300 “Nicest” seat

If you recall from my experience with the Breeze Airways E195 Extra Legroom seat, you already know that I’m a big fan of how this airline configures their interiors. The color palette consists of subtle light gray and white textures, which is a refreshing change of pace from all of the dark blues and grays so many other airlines use.

Complain about Breeze Airways all you want, but you absolutely cannot fault them for choosing ugly seat materials.

Breeze airways a220-300 nicest seat aisle
See? I wasn’t joking about the “shuffling down the aisle trying to find my seat” pics. 
Breeze airways a220-300 nicest seat cabin
Whoa. I hadn’t realized it before, but there are 9 rows of “Nicest” seats on these A220-300s (36 total seats). This is a very premium heavy configuration.
Breeze Airways a220-300 nicest seats
This is row 5, and the seat by the window is mine. Well, it’s technically the property of Breeze Airways, but you know what I mean.
Breeze Airways a220-300 nicest seat leg room
Legroom test: passed.
Breeze Airways a220-300 nicest seat foot space
Underseat foot space test: failed. I’m not sure what that black box is, but I can tell you that it is in a very inconvenient spot. It’s basically everywhere I want to place my foot.
Breeze Airways a220-300 nicest seat storage bins
These storage bins (located beneath the arm rest) helps to make up for the lack of foot space. Unless you’re a size 14. In that case, no amount of in-seat storage will make up for the lack of underseat storage.
Breeze airways a220-300 nicest seat controls
Just above the storage bins are the seat control buttons. One is for seat recline, and other is for…
Breeze airways a220-300 nicest seat adjustable leg rest
…the leg rest! Ain’t no other airline in the US doing this in domestic first class at the moment.
Breeze airways a220-300 nicest seat details
Notice the power ports and electrical outlets in the center console. Also, what do you have to put in that coffee to turn it that color?
Breeze airways a220-300 interior
So far so good! My expectations have been succeeded thus far, and I declare this to be “nice” (just as they promised it would be).

The departure out of Richmond

The really nice thing about flying out of small to medium-sized airports is how fast departure process usually is. There’s never any waiting in line, and it’s just a matter of pushing back from the gate and going. This morning was no exception, as it was pretty much a nonstop roll out to the departure runway.

Breeze airways a220-300 safety card
A pic of the safety card because I know I’m going to get requests for pics of the safety card. I always do.
Breeze airways a220-300 pushback Richmond airport
Waiting for pushback. It’s hard to tell, but I can almost see the “let’s f*****g go already” in his swagger (lol).
Richmond international airport
Yup, I really do think that RIC is one of the more interesting airports I’ve visited in a while. I like it a lot.
Taking off in a breeze airways a220-300
FYI, I recorded a full video of the departure (embedded below). It’s worth the watch if you’ve never heard what an A220-300 sounds like at full throttle before.

Takeoff from Richmond in a breeze airways a220-300
What a takeoff! I like big widebody airplanes as much as anyone else, but I’m not afraid to admit that I’ve got a huge crush on the A220. This is my kind of airplane (and not only because the boarding pass matches the plane).

In-flight entertainment

Flying with Breeze Airways at this time is still a somewhat featureless experience. They have been promising an in-flight entertainment option since the beginning, but they’ve been very slow to roll it out. This particular aircraft hadn’t yet been configured with an in-flight entertainment system, so they encouraged everyone to download content to the personal devices before pushing back from the gate.

breeze airways a220-300 nicest seat in seat power
There isn’t any in-flight entertainment to speak of (yet), but they are generous with the power outlets and USB ports for your personal devices.

Despite the lack of any onboard entertainment, I can say that I’m a really big fan of how accommodating they are when it comes to personal devices. There are tablet and phone holders the seat backs, as well as within the tray table itself. Very cool.

breeze airways a220-300 nicest seat personal device holders
Whether you’re rocking a full size tablet or an iPhone Mini, these highly-adjustable personal device holders in the seat back headrests are extremely handy.
breeze airways a220-300 nicest seat tray table phone holder
And if that wasn’t enough, these flip up phone holders in the tray tables are freaking brilliant!
breeze airways a220-300 nicest seat tray table device holder
If this isn’t a perfect example of why it’s vitally necessary to have “Top Gun” downloaded to your phone at all times, I don’t what is. FML 

The food

In-flight meals on Breeze Airways are coming (so they say), but there’s still no indication of when that will happen. On this 5 1/2 hour flight from Richmond to San Francisco, all we got were drinks and a snack. Technically, they call it a “premium” snack. Everyone back in the regular economy seats had to pay for what we were served up front (for free) in the Nicest seats.

Breeze airways nicest seat food
Never in my life did I think that I’d ever find myself in a situation where I had to make a bag of Chex Mix last 5 and a half hours hours, but here we are.

As you can see, they didn’t really skimp on the snack service. The proportions were huge! Much more substantial than what you would get on any other airline (even in business class).

Breeze airways nicest seat complimentary snack
I’d rather not eat an entire “mega bag” of Chex Mix for breakfast, but…knowing how much I like Chex Mix…RIP to the contents of this bag.
Breeze airways nicest seat snacks
For what it’s worth, the other two options were M&M’s, or Pringles. I made the right choice. Chex Mix is always the right choice. 

How comfortable are the “Nicest” seats on long transcontinental flights?

If you’re familiar with proper premium economy seats on any other major airline, you’ll already know what to expect when it comes to the Breeze Airways “Nicest” seat. These seats are fairly wide, they offer tons of legroom, and there’s even a leg rest for additional comfort. Personally, I didn’t find the leg rest to be all that comfortable, but I suppose it could be for shorter people.

Breeze airways nicest seat comfort
I really hope Breeze Airways survives, because these premium seats are every bit as good as domestic first class seats on any US airline. And I still want to know what’s in that coffee.

The best way to summarize the comfort of these seats is to tell you that they are a lot better than regular economy seats just a few rows. back. They’re really not lying to us when they say that they are the nicest seats on the airplane.

SANspotter breeze airways a220-300 nicest seat
There is enough leg room in these seats to squirm around in and stretch out, and that makes me (and my absolute bastard of a lower back) very happy.
breeze airways a220-300 mood lighting
Neon pink and blue mood lighting makes me happy as well. My lower back could care less, but my brain thinks it goes a long way towards making this a very pleasant experience.
breeze airways a220-300 nicest seat recline
If you’re curious about seat recline, it’s pretty good. Also, there’s enough space between these seats so that it’s not overly annoying when the person in front of you slams their seat back.

The arrival into San Francisco

It was shaping up to be a beautiful morning in the San Francisco Bay area as we made the descent down over the Sierra Nevada mountains. San Francisco is usually cold and foggy this time of year, so it was nice to see the sun the entire way into runway 28R.

breeze airways a220-300 forward lavatory
The same people who want to see safety card pics usually ask for toilet pics as well. You’re welcome.
breeze airways a220-300 flying over Sierra Nevada mountains
Beginning the descent already? The fact that I lost all track of time tells you how nice this experience was (and that I’m a bit of a airhead).
Approaching 28L SFO breeze airways A220-300
Final approach into 28R at SFO. And I’ll give $20 to the first person who dares to drink a full glass of that water.
Breeze airways a220-300 landing at SFO
Welcome to San Francisco!
Breeze airways terminal 2 SFO
Interesting. Breeze Airways uses Terminal 2 at SFO – I thought for sure they’d be over in Terminal A with all the other “one flight a day with no relationship to any other airline” airlines.
Breeze airways a220-300 inside
The seatbelt sign tuned off 15 seconds ago and nobody is in a rush to get up. And I totally get it. These seats are that good!
Breeze airways a220-300 nicest seat aisle width
Oops, I mean “nice.” These seats are nice!

Pros and cons of the “Nicest” seats on the Breeze Airways A220-300

Despite the lack of food and in-flight entertainment, this was probably one of the best transcontinental flights I’ve ever had. The cabin crew was excellent, and the seat was really nice (exactly as advertised). I’d totally do it again. If that wasn’t enough to convince you, here’s a list of what I consider to be all the pros and cons:

Pros

  • The seats are wide with gobs of legroom. If I had to compare it to any other domestic US first class product, I’d say that it was most like Alaska Airlines 737 MAX 9 first class.
  • The adjustable leg rest is nice. Anyone under 6 feet tall probably won’t get much benefit from it, but it’s a nice feature nonetheless.
  • The phone/tablet holders in the seat backs and tray tables are a godsend. I really wish more airlines would do this!
  • The serving size of the premium snacks they provided were extremely generous.

Cons

  • The lack of proper food is a disappointment. Especially on long 5 1/2 hour flights across the country.
  • The lack of in-flight entertainment was a bummer as well. It behooves you to plan ahead and download content to your device before departure. I recommend Top Gun.
  • If you’re in the window seat, and the person in the aisle seat is asleep with their leg rest up, you’ll be completely stuck. It’ll be nearly impossible to climb over them without waking them up (and creating an incredibly awkward situation).

Comments (3)

  1. Peter

    September 13, 2022
    • Scott (SANspotter)

      September 13, 2022
  2. Peter

    September 18, 2022

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