First-class passengers on select British Airways (BA) flights will have access to virtual reality headsets in a trial announced Aug. 14.

The “AlloSky” headsets are designed by SkyLights, an American-French company that graduated from the Hangar 51 accelerator program run by BA parent company International Airlines Group (IAG). They provide passengers with an immersive, 3D-view of films and other visual content regardless of a passenger’s position.

British Airways said it is the first UK airline to test the technology, after working with experts to select a range of therapeutic programs, including guided meditation and sound therapy, specifically designed for customers who have a fear of flying.

Earlier this year, BA tested the technology at London’s Heathrow Airport (LHR) Terminal 5, providing customers with a virtual reality view of its Club World long-haul business class cabin.

“We are always looking at the latest technology to enhance our customers’ experience on the ground and in the air,” British Airways head of inflight product Sajida Ismail said. “Virtual reality has the power to revolutionize inflight entertainment and … these new glasses … should create a unique and memorable journey for our first-class customers.”

BA said it is investing £6.5 billion ($7.8 billion) on passenger amenities over five years, including the installation of Wi-Fi and power in every aircraft seat, fitting 128 long-haul aircraft with new interiors and taking delivery of 72 new aircraft.

Through the end of the year, the virtual reality headsets will be offered on select flights from LHR to New York JFK airports, the airline said.

Bill Carey, bill.carey@aviationweek.com