Korean Air has announced that it will operate a mixed fleet between London Heathrow and Seoul Incheon airport.

From March 26, the airline’s A380 and the Boeing 747-8i will be used on the route, with the B747-8i to be the first commercial passenger aircraft of its kind to land at Heathrow.

Compared with earlier models, the B747-8 Intercontinental aircraft can fly for longer and carry more passengers, both quieter and more fuel-efficient, with a Dreamliner inspired interior.

The airline currently has seven of the aircraft in its fleet, with another three due to be delivered before the end of 2018. It has ten A380 aircraft in a three-class layout with 407 seats, and a business-class only upper deck.

A daily flight currently operates between London and Seoul, departing Heathrow Terminal 4 at 1935, arriving at Incheon airport at 1435 the next day.  The return journey will depart Incheon at 1315, arriving at Heathrow at 1725.

Commenting on the move, Heathrow CEO John Holland-Kaye said: “We’re always delighted when the newest aircraft join the Heathrow fleet and the Korean Air 747-8i is no exception.

“As the first of its type at Heathrow and packed with innovative technology, the aircraft’s arrival will make a tangible difference in helping Heathrow to become a cleaner and quieter airport whilst giving our passengers a top-notch in-flight experience on their journeys to Korea.”

Sales manager for Korean Air UK and Ireland Peter Barron said:

“Our A380 is always popular, offering everything the double-decker aircraft is famous for and more, as our design has the most spacious layout in the sky with just 407 seats in total; the upper deck can be compared to a business class only airline as it is configured as just business class.

“The B747-8i meanwhile is a new addition to our fleet; this environmentally friendly, quiet aircraft has the very latest, superb interior and seats with a sophisticated inflight entertainment system.”