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More Etihad A380s to Sydney but none to Melbourne

April 27, 2017 Headline News No Comments Email Email

Etihad Airways is going double-daily with A380s to Sydney, announcing that all 14 weekly flights on its popular Abu Dhabi-Sydney route will be operated with its flagship A380 aircraft, effective 29 October 2017 – though the airline will reportedly stop flying A380s to Melbourne from the same date.

Australian Business Traveller reports that Abu Dhabi-based Etihad will pull the plug on its A380 services between Abu Dhabi and Melbourne and will serve the route with a B777-300ER and a B787-9 Dreamliner instead.

Etihad announced yesterday that its current daily A380 Sydney flights would 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.

Etihad A380

Last week, Etihad said it would double its A380 services to New York from this June. The announcement came in stark contrast to rival Emirates, which said it would be pruning services to the US, following US President Donald Trump’s ban on in-flight laptops.

Etihad’s A380s feature The Residence – the world’s first three-room suite on a commercial airliner. The additional deployment of the 496-seat double decker Etihad 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, and the airline will meet the growing demand from the UAE and connecting cities across the Gulf region, the Middle East and Europe, the airline said yesterday.

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. All three daily London Heathrow flights are operated with an A380. Beginning 1 June 2017, 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.”

Flight schedule: Abu Dhabi – Sydney, effective 29 October 2017:

Flight No. Origin Departs Destination Arrives Frequency Aircraft
EY450 Abu Dhabi 09:25 Sydney  06:15 +1 Daily Airbus 380
EY451 Sydney 16:20 Abu Dhabi 23:55 Daily Airbus 380
EY454 Abu Dhabi 22:15 Sydney 19:15 +1 Daily Airbus 380
EY455 Sydney 21:50 Abu Dhabi 05:40 +1 Daily Airbus 380

Written by Peter Needham

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