The FINANCIAL — Etihad Airways on April 26 announced all 14 weekly flights on the popular Abu Dhabi – Sydney route will be operated with its flagship A380 aircraft, effective October 29.
The current daily A380 Sydney flights will be joined by a second daily superjumbo service, upgraded from a 328-seat Boeing 777-300ER. The announcement comes as Etihad Airways marks the 10th anniversary of flying to Sydney, its first Australian destination.
Featuring the carrier’s revolutionary The Residence – the world’s first three-room suite on a commercial airliner – the additional deployment of the 496-seat double decker aircraft means one of Australia’s largest cities will join London and New York as an all-A380 operation.
Business and leisure travellers to and from Abu Dhabi, the airline’s operational hub, will enjoy increased capacity. The carrier will meet growing demand from the UAE and connecting cities across the Gulf region, Middle East and Europe, according to Etihad Airways.
The Sydney – London Heathrow route, via Abu Dhabi, will also offer guests the consistency, convenience and comfort of a seamless all-A380 service in both directions. Etihad Airways’ three daily London Heathrow flights are operated with an A380. Beginning June 1, the second daily New York service will be upgraded to the superjumbo.
Introduced on the Sydney route two years ago, the A380 accommodates up to two guests in The Residence, which features a living room, bedroom and shower, together with nine First Apartments, 70 Business Studios and 415 Economy Smart Seats.
Peter Baumgartner, Etihad Airways Chief Executive Officer, said: “Sydney is one of our busiest and best performing long-haul routes where we have experienced increased demand, particularly in our premium cabins, since the launch 10 years ago.
“By introducing the A380 on the second daily flight, we are able to ensure our flagship product is on all of the Sydney services each week. The upgrade of this service will help fulfil growing demand, benefiting travellers to and from Abu Dhabi, and across Etihad Airways’ global network.”