The double-decker aircraft departed from the UAE capital in the early hours of 27 December 2014, operating as flight EY11 – one of the three daily services to the UK capital. By August 2015, every Etihad flight between Abu Dhabi and London will be an A380 service.
And all these aircraft will come fitted with Etihad’s new range of cabin products, including the three-room ‘Residence’, which includes separate lounge, bedroom and bathroom areas, including showers.
Miami-based businessman Gino Bertuccio became the first person to experience the Residence when he booked the accommodation for its inaugural flight.
“The response from air travellers to our new A380, particularly the Residence by Etihad penthouse suite, has been incredible and we’re delighted to introduce the aircraft into commercial service,” said James Hogan, the airline’s president & CEO.
“This last week has seen the successful final testing and preparations for the inaugural historic flight to London Heathrow and we look forward to welcoming guests onto the A380 aircraft at Abu Dhabi Airport.”
The A380 also features ‘First Apartments’, which are suites with a separate reclining lounge seats and flat-bed seats, as well as minibars and wardrobes.
A total of 70 Business Studios are located on the upper deck, all with flat-bed seats and aisle access, while there are also 417 economy class seats. All passengers are offered in-flight Wi-Fi.
Etihad has ordered a total of 10 A380s, all of which are expected to be delivered by the end of 2017.