Earlier I wrote about Etihad Airways’ ridiculously amazing Airbus A380s, which will feature Residences, First Class Apartments, and Business Class Studios. The new cabins are truly revolutionary, totally putting everything else out there to shame.
However, that’s not the extent of their new fleet — Etihad will also be taking delivery of their first 787 later this year.
Etihad’s long term Boeing 787-9 plans
Etihad Airways has the largest order of Boeing 787s of any carrier in the world. Between Q4 2014 and 2023 they’ll be taking delivery of 71 Boeing 787s, including:
- 41 Boeing 787-9s
- 30 Boeing 787-10s
They’ll be taking delivery of the first 787-9 in December 2014, with a second 787-9 entering service in January 2015. Then by the end of 2015 Etihad will have a total of five 787-9s in service.
Etihad’s first Boeing 787-9 routes
Etihad will be deploying their first 787 to Dusseldorf in December 2014, and by January 2015 will feature the 787 on flights to Washington Dulles and Mumbai.
Between December 1 and December 31, 2014, the following flight to Dusseldorf will be served by a 787-9:
EY23 Abu Dhabi to Dusseldorf departing 2:20AM arriving 6:35AM
EY24 Dusseldorf to Abu Dhabi departing 10:20AM arriving 7:50PM
Effective January 1, 2015, the following Mumbai flight will be operated by a 787-9:
EY206 Abu Dhabi to Mumbai departing 10:05PM arriving 3:05AM (+1 day)
EY205 Mumbai to Abu Dhabi departing 4:30AM arriving 6:30AM
Effective January 1, 2015, the following Washington Dulles flight will be operated by a 787-9:
EY131 Abu Dhabi to Washington departing 11:00AM arriving 5:40PM
EY132 Washington to Abu Dhabi departing 9:30PM arriving 7:45PM (+1 day)
More service will be announced in 2015, as long-term the 787 will make up the backbone of the Etihad Airways longhaul fleet.
Etihad’s Boeing 787-9 configuration
Etihad’s 787-9s will feature three classes of service — first class, business class, and economy class.
Each plane will feature a total of 235 seats, spread across three cabins as follows:
- 8 seats in First Suites
- 28 seats in Business Studios
- 199 seats in Economy Class
Here’s a video of the new Etihad Airways 787-9 cabins:
Etihad’s Boeing 787-9 First Suite
Etihad will have a total of eight first class suites in a 1-2-1 configuration.
While their Residences and First Class Apartments on the A380 are especially innovative, the 787-9 first class product looks like a slight update to their current first class suite.
First Class Suite
Here’s a video of the new Etihad Airways 787-9 first class product:
Etihad’s Boeing 787-9 Business Studio
Etihad will have the same business class product on the 787-9 that they have on the A380, which from the looks of it may be the best business class hard product in the world.
There will be a total of 28 business class seats spread across seven rows, also with four seats per row.
Given how spectacular the new business class appears to be, the first class product may only be marginally nicer than the business class product.
Here’s a video of the new Etihad Airways 787-9 business class product:
I’m thrilled that Etihad is going with a three cabin configuration on their 787s, given that most airlines are only offering business class as the highest cabin.
While the first class product more or less looks on par with what Etihad Airways currently offers, the business class product is a substantial improvement.
Unlike on the A380, Etihad isn’t actively blocking award space on the 787.