United Shrinking Business Class Pajamas

Filed Under: United

There are many aspects of the United Polaris soft product that impress me, including the bedding and pajamas. United offers pajamas to business class passengers on flights of over 12 hours, making them the only US airline to consistently do so:

  • American only offers pajamas to business class passengers on flights to/from Auckland, Hong Kong, and Sydney
  • Delta offered pajamas to select business class passengers for a while, but they’ve since discontinued them

United’s pajamas are actually quite decent, certainly among the best you’ll find out there in business class. Well, as noted by @BrianSumers, it looks like United is updating the pajamas they’ll offer in business class.

In addition to sharing pictures of the design change, United also notes that they’re changing the size of the pajamas. United has two sizes of pajamas:

  • With United’s previous design they had:
    • Small pajamas, which leaned towards “M”
    • Large pajamas, which leaned towards “XL”
  • With United’s new design they have:
    • Small pajamas, which lean towards “S”
    • Large pajamas, which lean towards “L”

I must be missing something, but what data is United going off of that’s causing them to think that their customer are losing weight?

I’d have to try the new pajamas to know how the quality compares. Call me a skeptic, but I imagine the only reason United would make this change is because it represents cost savings, though perhaps they’ll somehow spin this in a positive way.

United has made significant cutbacks to Polaris since introducing it a few years ago — I’d say at this point the bedding, pajamas, and amenities are above average, while the food and drinks are just average.

While I think the old pajamas look nicer than the new ones, who knows how the materials compare. Regardless, the fact that they’re shrinking the size of pajamas is… surprising.

If you are a frequent traveler in United Polaris, you may want to adjust the size of pajamas you order going forward.

What do you make of United’s new pajamas?

  1. So wild guess: I’m assuming that 12 hour plus flights skew towards an Asian demographic for them, so this could make sense from that aspect

  2. This is why I bring mesh shorts and a t-shirt for lounging on long flights. I don’t trust airlines to have the right size for me.

  3. S European = XS American. The current Small are at least an M American. That’s a whole 2 sizes. Not complaining though, it’s perfect for me!

  4. I have their old Polaris pajamas and they work great. I take them on long-haul European flights on any carrier. The flight attendants give a bit of a smirk since they say “United” on them but I mention I’d gladly wear their own carrier’s pajamas if they offered them.

  5. I would guess they were consistently running out of the smaller size. I’ve been given the L size before because they ran out of the S and the L size is BIG. On other airlines I’ll frequently opt for L to get a looser fit for sleeping, and the current United L is significantly larger than any of those. I just hope they don’t go too far in the other direction, it’s always going to be hard to accomodate a range of differently sized people with only 2 sizes of PJs.

    It’s also possible it’s just a logistics thing, with a new supplier offering different size options.

  6. United pajamas aren’t exactly high quality. I regard them as disposable (same as VS and BA). For true high-quality pajamas, CX, NH, LX, and the old EK pajamas are my favorites.

  7. @david those are first class one aren’t they? Correct me if I’m wrong but I don’t think any of those carriers offer pyjamas in business class.

  8. The new ones definitely don’t look as cute as the old ones. The color palette seems less aligned with Polaris branding.

  9. I’ve been on many 12+ hours flights on United and never once was given a pajama, darn…

  10. Thank god. I found the previous S/M to be quite large – so I’m glad they’re shifting down in size!

  11. The previous S/M was too big and I normally wear S/M. It’s good that they are shrinking the size a bit

  12. So there is no way that I will ever don any United pajamas! Instead, I’ll have to give them to my 11 year old daughter. What is United smoking to think that this move is logical? People are growing, not shrinking (and I don’t just mean weight). Even in Asia.

  13. EVA has done the opposite. The previous design for M and L were for their Asian customers. The new design is European sizing. No trouser pockets on the new ones though.

  14. I love my old United pj’s. They’re easily 5 times the quality of AA’s first class pj’s. So I guess UA is downgrading to compete?

  15. how about mentioning Delta completely eliminated pajamas last year. That’s a draconian cut.

  16. The old larges were huge. HUUUUUUUGE!

    My issue isn’t the size at all. Its the availability. Out of the dozen or so eligible flights they’ve only been available twice.

  17. To me, this is a huge improvement. I’m not a tiny person (I’m 5’9″, 140 lbs), and I was swimming in United’s pajamas I got last year. Their smallest size was uselessly huge.

  18. 5’10” and 160lbs. I fly Polaris to Asia quarterly.
    I have several sets of S/M for home use. The L/XL are massive.
    I also don’t understand this shift in the sizing and design but it appears that I’m going up a size.

  19. Wow! another Scott Kirby “service enhancement”. What corner will he cut next? How much is he saving on this one? 10 across seating when there used to be 9 in Y, reduced legroom, smaller PJs, smaller food portions, you got to now be anorexic to fly UA in style.

  20. Qantas gives you PJ’s and a mattress pad on your seat. No begging or feeling awkward asking as United flights crews are prone to make you feel. United make a choice either be a real International carrier or a wannabe that whines the UAE has some advantage. Yes they do..they cater to real customers who want to pay for quality seats and service not to some points groupie who wants a one time thrill in biz class.

  21. Finally, pj’s sized for my 5’2, 114 pound frame! BA used to have great ones for smaller people, but only on their flights from London to South Africa, or at least that’s where I found them. My Polaris pj’s from early Polaris flights are all too big. But, the stuffed bears fit just fine!

  22. Lucky, I may have missed it but it seems to me that you haven’t covered PJ size much. I will never be able to wear them but, perhaps as others do, they’l Be nice for overnight guests.

  23. Recently did the overnight IAH-EZE flight in Polaris J. No pj’s offered, but was prepared with my current favorites from Emirates F. Flight was a nightmare, with a surly middle-aged FA barking “trays out!” at his J pax at mealtime. What a douche he was. Was clearly having a bad day/life. Polaris has evolved into a joke.

  24. United doesn’t consistently offer PJs. You must request them usually and hope that you receive them. They also didn’t offer them on their long flights to India (currently suspended).

  25. Eva Air has nice pyjamas, but as they’re an Asian airline everything runs small. I’m a Euro Sm, but definitely an Asian M. On a long overnight flight it’s great to have pyjamas without needing to carry more crap with you. I live in London but spend a lot of time in Vietnam, so this is important.

    Generally I avoid US carriers as they don’t provide the same level of service.

  26. Lol. I’m 6’3” 245 lbs and the XL was basically a medium. Therefore, I need a 3XL – will never happen. United needs to learn the craft from Emirates absolutely qatar!

  27. @Ryan said: This is why I bring mesh shorts and a t-shirt for lounging on long flights. I don’t trust airlines to have the right size for me.

    You must have been one row ahead of me on my last EK flight, DXB to SFO.

  28. Asian customers are smaller than the typical American fata** Global and Premier 1K passenger… Makes complete sense, also you clearly don’t know fittings, because their Small tended towards large and their large tended towards obese…

  29. Who actually still wears pajamas and, if they did, would want to wear something provided by an airline that you don’t know the history of? I haven’t worn pajamas since I was a kid (prefer to sleep nude) and just wear comfortable clothes when I fly (including American DFW-Hong Kong where I was offered the pajamas and quickly declined)

  30. I have never seen people wearing pyjamas on NRT-EWR. I would prefer no pyjamas be offered on any flight. I never use and it clogs the bathrooms around the second meal service. Just wear comfy clothes and change in the arrivals lounge.

  31. The problem is that no carrier is willing to stock 4 sizes, as a clothing store would. A size shouldn’t “lean towards” anything. There are Asia sizes and US sizes. Just tell us what size the garment is and admit you don’t carry a sensible range.

    Even in CX F the sizes are stupidly large, excellent quality cotton pjs I can admire, but can’t wear. Only JL F nailed it, IME. 178cm 66kg. 5’10”, 155lbs, 29w.

    This is only hard cuz they all think they can manage with Two Size Fits All

  32. I’m reading this sitting at home in a new L PJs. They are very large, definitely not European L, more like a US XL.

  33. United lifted my expectations with the previous generation pajamas. The new pajamas are still not terrible, but significantly less impressive overall. They just seem to lack the velvet smooth feel of the old ones.

  34. The new pajamas are not only more comfortable to me, but breathe better, resulting in me sleeping cooler on flights. They are perhaps a bit smaller, and fit me better.

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