Yesterday I shared the news that Etihad will be launching service between Abu Dhabi and Los Angeles as of June 1, 2014. At the time they were only accepting reservations for economy class, though it looks like some updates have been made since then. First of all, the flight won’t be operated by a 777-300ER, but rather by a 777-200LR, which they’re acquiring from Air India. Up until this point I didn’t really see any information on how they were planning on configuring their 777-200LRs, though it has now been confirmed that these planes will feature a first class cabin. Rumor has it they’ll have eight first class seats, 40 business class seats, and 189 economy class seats.
So I’d say it’s a pretty big “win” that the route has first class, not that it’s really surprising. Unfortunately it doesn’t look like they’re started loading any award space yet, though.