A380s / B787 Dreamliners – flying with different airlines, which do you prefer?

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This topic contains 48 replies, has 27 voices, and was last updated by  flyingcanadian 6 Sep 2015
at 09:31

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  • Anonymous


    I have been fortunate to be able to choose good A380 / 787 flights in recent times, from a number of Airlines. I have found though, vast differences in all classes ,and service on Board, and indeed variable routes, and for how long different Airlines with fly them.

    SQ – Unbeatable spacious and wide seat with great privacy, friendly professional service, though a definite cut back on food amount and quality. Trips to Sydney were re-classed as Medium Haul and i was shocked to be asked if i wanted my main meal at night, OR in the morning!

    TG – Between HKG-BKK only 2.5 hrs. Excellent seating at 1-2-1, (Seat as on their 787 also). Very spacious cabin, but a strange mix of PE and Economy upstairs at the back. Crews were superb, 1 crew to each 2 passengers. Food was excellent as always, beautifully presented, Very nutritious, and as much and as good as a long haul flight on other carriers. I very much enjoyed this relaxing and well staffed flight, and the HKG lounge is also very impressive with the meals and food pre flight.
    TG recently took off the LHR 747 flights replaced with one A380 daily.

    MH – Flew with Malaysian from LHR with the aircraft a few weeks old. The Purser informed me that a bar was taken out of the plans only weeks before they were due, so the whole Right side upper front level, is cupboards. Left is a huge and very prestigious bathroom., wooden floor, window to “Sit and see out of”! The Seat is Not fully flat, stoops quite an angle downwards. at the ankles, Professional welcoming service, food good, but no features, a “Nothing special “A380”. Shame, a missed opportunity.

    TG 787 -Business Class from BKK to KUL which was also very good. With a 1-1-1. Sitting on the A side gives more privacy, as on the other side the middle seat faces right also. Service the same as above, and meals excellent. It was certainly more spacious, good clean air, and the filters for the windows electronically set on 5 shades. quiet but a small plane feel from outside.

    AF – The Cabin and seat was cramped, seating 2-2-2 in an old style configuration. Still having to climb over the passenger next to you, using the seat handrail as a step, which often wakes them. ill conceived seating. Service was awful, staff that did not care, poor attitude. Food was poor quality and quantity, sloppy in the way it was served. AF still feel taking foil tops of dishes splattered inside and out is “a good service”. My Vegetarian meal, the salad was two types of lettuce, nothing else. Main meals 3 vegetables, no protein, ice cold plastic trays and bread, and a “Broken oven” meant uncooked bread rolls, also stone cold along with everyone’s meals. Much food was left.
    A Completely unused “Gallery of 3 monitors of various buildings on front R side of upper deck, no one looked or went too!! Better use would be a toilet rather than 1 for 26 seats!
    I will Never take them again, and have to say the last 3 trips in the last 2 years, each one has been the same on all flights. This IS , Air France. Poor Traveller benefit from AF, based more on their numbers than for us.
    Could not be more different from KLM’s service, food, and attitude, and amazes they are counted as one Company, when AF loses cash and KLM makes profits, but reported financially together!

    Looking forwards to KLM’s 789’s in October, they are flying to Abu Dhabi also according to the timetables.

    Etihad – I am soon to fly with them down to Sydney, and of course they fly from LHR now, all A380’s LHR-SYD soon. Friends flew last week found the seats great, though with a 1-2-1 configuration, every other row has seats facing backwards, not popular!. The bar gives a great “destination and purpose”, in leaving your seat to go somewhere. The Philosophy of being a “Guest” as in a hotel guest, very much felt on All Etihad flights in First and Business. No trolleys or pre packed meals, all prepared with chef in The First Apartments or F & B Manager in Business studios. The seats are apparently private comfortable, nice lighting, personalised and plenty storage, with a lie flat duvet and turndown service for everyone, and “lounge wear to sleep in for Biz and First . There is a Bar which appears very contemporary, as their lounges, and on board now. Mix of Dark Mahogany, creams, brown with sparks of colour on cushions and crew uniforms. Airline recently re-branded, so the new planes carry a new more contemporary look.
    Food on longer Etihad flights is “Dine anytime Menu” based. Eg -Breakfast is freshly cooked EG choice of how you like your eggs, what is on board and it is cooked for you freshly. First Apartments, areas have a changing room and showers now also, and a larger walk around private Suite, vanity area, cool mini bar, better lighting, Large flat screen TV opposite your lounge seats, Fully flat bed from the storage area under TV, without using your seating, much more space, & storage. Best in sky?

    Match the free nights stopovers they offer in AUH, Chauffeur cars then, and each side in First and Business (not on Z class tickets anymore), extensive lounge experiences with full food, spa, and arrivals lounges, they are unbeaten.
    I am also due to take them to Singapore soon on the 789 Dreamliner.

    I see China Southern now use the A380 to Sydney, India Airlines the 787, and several other China based Airlines using these aircraft increasingly, looking at long haul say LON-SYD.

    Found innovation, creating something different on board, Additional comfort, something special in the cabins, leave the best impressions, not just jamming people in as AF clearly do.

    They are available on Long haul only, or also on short haul routes. Certainly on shorter routes, for a Business class ticket, to try them out is a good idea as well as a good deal.
    And you…?


    I’ve flown BA only on the 787 and think the CW is okay (if somewhat dated) and the WTP cabins are very good. I recently did AUS-LHR overnight and got 4 hours solid sleep in W (CW sold out, but not sure I’d buy it next time, after this good experience.)

    I haven’t flown BA on the A380, but have done EK several times in Y (day) and J (night) and really rate the Y cabin (comfortable, wide, well pitched), whilst the J is perfectly okay, but a bit of a dormitory (think BA777W.)

    I also took one flight on a QR A380 (day, in Y) and it was well on a par with EK.


    BA 380 business class is very comfortable,once you get used to the seats & I get plenty of sleep – it seems less prone to turbulence than the 747, must be those wings made in Wales! Usual service standard & gd food & wine,snacks,etc.If in upper deck & tall use the forward toilets since the cabin toilets are smaller! Two middle seats are good for a couple or single, like your own cabin!


    I have flown on the A380 in Economy with Emirates, Qantas, Singapore and Malaysian – fairly much of a muchness but the carriers which have a small Economy cabin at the rear of the upper deck win hands down – it is a (relatively) quiet haven compared to main deck.

    In Business on the A380, I have flown Emirates and Malaysian and much preferred the latter – not as gimmicky and more conventional in the layout but a much more relaxed feel. Will be flying BA’s A380 in a week or so to LAX so will be able to share thoughts after that.

    Only flown the 787 with Qatar in Economy EDI – DOH – SIN and then back DOH – EDI. Intimate to say the least but I was with my better half so that made the limited space easier to tolerate.


    BA A380 economy is quite horrific….even the crews say so! Absolutely nowhere to put your legs and feet due to the space taken up by the IFE box in every footwell I did it once. Never again. Totally unacceptable on a long haul flight.


    I’ve read in a few places about problems with IFE boxes impacting legroom in economy. Is this just a BA problem or is it bad news across all airlines?

    I have flown BA and Qantas A380s in First. I preferred Qantas though not much in it. The cabin just felt a bit more exclusive and roomier although both BA and Qantas have 14 seats in the cabin.

    BA cabin could be more luxurious. It’s roomy and private due to higher partitions between seats but feels a bit utilitarian, office cubes with a lie flat seat!!!! Bed is wide at feet (extra space on the 380) but restricted at shoulders as its the same seat as on the 747 and 777. However it’s way ahead of the 747 and 777 cabin. Interested to see the latest variation on the 787-9 which according to the seat plan at least, looks like more space per seat.

    Of course depending on the crew, service can be varied. As mentioned on many other posts, BA service is consistently inconsistent!


    I’ve flown Thai A380 from Frankfurt to BKK. The 1-2-1 configuration is great if you get either one of the single seats or the twin middle seats which have the separate partition between both seats – otherwise it’s a bit too cozy for my liking.
    As marcusGB mentioned they also have Economy and PE upstairs, but it didn’t impinge at all on the service.

    Also flown Lufthansa from Frankfurt to JFK – 2-2-2 configuration in business. The only complaint is the Lufthansa seat where you inevitably end out touching toes with your neighbour if your’re not careful.
    Thai is the better of the two in my opinion


    I have flown Lufthansa A380 in Y and J (Old Seating). Economy was ok, but the slimline seats get a bit tough on the posterior on the long JNB-FRA flight. Service was friendly and courteous – then I was in the forward cabin generally reserved for *G (It is now where PE is located). Upstairs, the J cabin is quiet and the service efficient LH service. The ski slope seating was disappointing, and I look forward to my next trip with the new seating – but not the footsie cubicle!

    On SQ, I have only flown the A380 in Y, both on the upper and lower decks. Certainly prefer the upper deck seating, it is extremely quiet, exclusive and cosy.

    On EK, the A380 is more of the same for EK, a bus service. Unlike SQ and LH, which do not have many entertainment boxes, EK boxes take up a lot of room under the seat, a serious problem for tall pax, and a reason I generally avoid EK – really poor seat pitch.

    For the 787, I have only had the opportunity of flying ET in Y. Nothing to write home about. One bonus is they try to block adjacent seats for *G, unless the flight is full.


    I’m lucky enough to have been on the A380 in F on every airline that operates it except BA and in C on SQ, ET and EK. It’s an excellent aircraft which changed the game of long haul flying.

    I’ve been on the 787 with QR in C and didn’t like it at all, it felt claustrophobic although the QR C seating is excellent. I also sat for a short while in a Y seat and thought it dreadful. I understand QR are beginning to be concerned that Y passengers seem to be avoiding the 787 and I’m not surprised.

    Is it also worth considering the A350? I’ve been on that a couple of times between DOH-FRA and DOH-SIN. It’s an excellent aircraft, light years different to the 787 and again I tested the Y seating which was quite acceptable. I understand it’s proving very popular and I certainly enjoyed flying it and look forward to doing so again.


    I have flown the following A380’s.

    BA in both F and J, I very much liked the extra space in F, and the tasting menu, and have to say the crew were great on every flight (LHR/JNB and HKG)
    QF in J, OK service wise, seats also OK (LHR/DXB)
    EY in F, very nice, but I was expecting a lot so underwhelmed, but high quality touches/finishes, the bar area was slightly odd in that it was more of a lounge approach (LHR/AUH)
    QR in J I think the layout and QR’s bar/lounge to be v nice indeed, and much less tacky than EK (LHR/DOH)
    MH in J, nice relaxed service and the excellent Satay, but older style seats like QF (KUL/LHR)

    I have been on the Dreamliner on both BA and QR in J, found all to be great and certainly less dehydrated.
    I have the A350 coming up in a week or so, so will make a post after the flight, which is SIN/DOH.

    Happy and safe flying


    I’ve flown Lufthansa 380 and I’m really impressed with the First Class. From individual and lockable lockers to the largest bathroom I’ve ever seen on a plane, which even has a urinal and I’ve never seen that on any means of transport (apart from a boat that is).

    I wasn’t that impressed with business though. 2-3-2 seating, bathrooms standard size and an overall cramped feeling.


    I have only flown the 787 twice, both in Y and I have been avoiding it ever since. The stock y seat is terrible, cramped and with a poor cushion for the posterior. The Y seats I’ve tried on the a380 and a330 both offer a much more comfortable experience.

    As for business I’ve only been on the EK A380 which is comfortable although be warned that not all bed lengths are equal which is a big issue if you are tall. The seat is more than comfortable enough and he cabin is pretty quiet. I could do without the tacky fake wood. The colour palette could do with brining into the 21st century as we’ll. the best thing about EK’s food is the cheese, really interesting sections most times.


    Economy, Qatar Airways 787. Don’t believe the 5 star reviews – most uncomfortable flight of my life.


    JohnnyEnglish – I can believe you. A recently Qatar based friend flew DOG-DXB a while back on a QR 787 and frankly hated it. He refuses to fly the QR 787 and indeed avoids 787s on other airlines as well.

    In my case going back to the thread started by the poster, I have only been on the A380 on BA in J and 787 in Premium Y. The A380 was great -I had the last seat on the upper deck, which was very private. The flight was very smooth, quiet and the crew super. The forward toilets are huge!

    Like FDOS, I agree the BA 787 W seats are very comfortable, but just after boarding I quickly sat in a Y seat. And I can tell you it was THE most uncomfortable airline seat I have EVER sat in. I was only in it 10 seconds, but never again…

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