Airplane interior design


Airplane interior design should first think of the passenger during the design process. What kind of overall experience do we want to offer to the passenger?

There are various ways of creating different kind of atmosphere/experience in an interior, though the interior of an airplane is much different compared to an interior of a restaurant or even our own house. It is important to have the perfect selection of colors, patterns, shapes and lighting that will make passengers feel not only comfortable but safe as well.

Especially for the airplanes that operate on very long flights it is important to create an interior with a more “cosy”, home-like feeling, with relaxing colors and restful shapes and lighting.

For instance, a sculpted ceiling with gentle curves, developed for the Boeing 777 and now on other models as well, makes an airplane cabin feel more spacious. The gentle curves are repeated in the design of the overhead luggage bins and the sidewalls.

Colors and color psychology is another important topic that can impact the perception and overall experience of a passenger. Lighter colors may make something seem higher, larger, wider and more open. Darker colors give the feeling of lower, smaller, narrower and more enclosed spaces. Colors can certainly influence a person’s perception of temperature, humidity, appetite and scent.

Cabin wall patterns also may contribute to a passenger’s sense of comfort. Therefore the correct selection of sidewall motifs should not only be based the airline brand guidelines but also based on passenger’s comfort.

Like in any other environment (open space or not), lighting in the passenger cabin plays a role in overall comfort and experience. Soft changes in the cabin lighting can also help to transmit several “messages” to the passengers. For instance, if there is bright light in the cabin, that might mean there will be a meal served. If the brightness of light inside the cabin reduces, then is clear that the passenger may have some rest.

It is important to design smart solutions for extra items that the passenger might carry on during the flight. For example if your carry-on bag can fit overhead, that means it doesn’t have to go on the floor in the space where your legs should go. Passenger who can stretch their legs during a flight, will feel much more comfortable during the flight and much more relaxed once arrived in final destination.

All the aforementioned is an introduction to some basics for airplane interior design. In our coming posts, we will go deeper on this subject with some examples and some solutions as well. In the meantime, you can see our Velvet Airlines case study, and you can read more about similar posts here:

- Airline Branding and Scent Marketing
- How airlines can survive the crisis with great design
- Evolution and design in the air-traveling experience

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