The Airbus A380 seemed doomed just a short few years ago. Airlines couldn’t get the planes grounded fast enough in the wake of the covid pandemic. The mighty jet had rapidly become a liability with extremely high operating costs and difficulties in getting it filled. However the plane has made a comeback with some airlines that are now using it to serve slot limited airport. Such is the case of Etihad which has brought back the A380 first on flights to London and soon will bring it back on another high demand route.
The Etihad Airbus A380 Returns to New York in 2024
In 2023 Etihad reinstated in its fleet the largest plane it possesses, the Airbus A380. The airline did this more out of necessity than the love for the aircraft type, which never really clicked with EY as it did with Emirates.
The need for the A380 was driven by the great demand for air travel around the world and many airports becoming rapidly once again congested. Therefore it rapidly became necessary to operate to these slot limited airports the largest plane possibile.
This was the case in early 2023 with London Heathrow and will be the case with New York JFK during the 2024 summer season.
Etihad is in fact bringing back other Airbus A380s from storage so that it can serve one of the two daily flights from Abu Dhabi to New York. This will happen on April 22nd 2024 ahead of the busy summer season. With the larger plane on the route EY will be able to increase revenue on this highly profitable route. The other daily flight will remain a 787 service.
What Does The Etihad A380 Offer?
The A380 brings to the table a smoother ride for all passengers and spacious cabins. However what makes the Etihad A380 truly special is its first class cabin. That’s where the plane truly shines.
Specifically the plane features the unique experience of The Residence. A 2 room, 1 bathroom private travel area covering 125 square feet. An exclusive experience unmatched on any other airline.
Along with The Residence, the EY A380s feature:
- 9 First Class suites
- 70 Business Class seats
- 417 Economy Class seats
Other A380 Out of Storage
As mentioned Etihad is pulling out of storage additional A380s to operate one of the two daily Abu Dhabi to New York flights. It’s unclear if it’ll be one or two planes to reenter service. We’ll have more on this in a few weeks I think. Currently Etihad owns 10 Airbus A380s but is only operating 4, which are: