Etihad Airlines has confirmed plans to operate its Airbus A380 aircraft on routes to Sydney from 1 June 2015.
The world’s largest airliner will initially operate Etihad Airways’ daily flights between Abu Dhabi and Sydney, replacing the Boeing 777-300 which the airline currently deploys on the route. The move will see the introduction of Etihad Airways’ all-new business and economy cabins, including The Residence by Etihad apartments.
In turn, a Boeing 777-300 aircraft will operate the airline’s four weekly Abu Dhabi-Sydney services, which together with the daily A380 and partner airline Virgin Australia’s three weekly 777 flights offer travellers a double daily option.
These fleet changes will increase weekly capacity on the high-demand Sydney route by 1,320 making a total of 4,784 seats in each direction.
Etihad Airways president and chief executive officer James Hogan said: “With seamless connections in Abu Dhabi, Etihad Airways’ A380s will transform the ultra-long haul flying experience for guests in all cabins, ensuring they arrive at their destination – be that Sydney or London – in great shape.”
The Etihad Airways Airbus A380 is designed to carry 496 passengers in four living spaces, including two VIP guests in The Residence by Etihad, nine guests in the First Apartments, 70 in Business Class Studios, and 415 in Economy Class.
Etihad Airways has 10 Airbus A380s on firm order, the first of which will be delivered in December 2014. The aircraft will initially operate services between Abu Dhabi and London Heathrow.