HAMAD INTERNATIONAL AIRPORT
A380-FRIENDLY FACILITIES Eight contact gates capable of accommodating the superjumbo.
CARRIERS THAT DEPLOY THE A380 None at the moment, but Qatar Airways will soon receive its first three superjumbos to be deployed on its daily London rotations from October 1.
THINGS TO DO AT THE AIRPORT The Oryx Lounge is complimentary to all premium passengers, while economy class flyers yearning for a taste of luxury may pay a fee of QAR140 (US$38) to access the facility. In addition, the airport is home to over 30 cafes and restaurants offering global and regional cuisine – Caviar House and Prunier is particularly worth recommending.
A380-FRIENDLY FACILITIES A single contact gate, and a taxiway specifically developed (back in 2004) to accommodate extra-large aircraft.
CARRIERS THAT DEPLOY THE A380 None at the moment, though Emirates plans to serve Perth with an A380 later this year. The Gulf carrier was supposed to have started A380 operations into Perth last year, but had to halt the plan until a contact gate was constructed.
THINGS TO DO AT THE AIRPORT Emirates, Malaysia Airlines, Qantas and Singapore Airlines have lounge facilities at the airport – all of which are located on the second floor of the departure hall. There aren’t many shops or dining options available, but for those who wish to get some local souvenirs, Australian Way is a good place to check out.
CHHATRAPATI SHIVAJI INTERNATIONAL AIRPORT (TERMINAL 2)
A380-FRIENDLY FACILITIES Three contact gates for the A380, as well as expanded runways that are now certified Code F - meaning they’re capable of accommodating large aircraft.
CARRIERS THAT DEPLOY THE A380 Singapore Airlines was the first carrier to deploy the superjumbo to Mumbai back in May, and this was soon followed by Emirates. Lufthansa is expected to follow suit by 2015.
THINGS TO DO AT THE AIRPORT Be on the lookout for one of India’s largest public art exhibitions – Jaya He. Occupying selected walkways inside the terminal, the permanent series of artworks depicts a distinct interpretation of Indian culture.
HARTSFIELD-JACKSON ATLANTA INTERNATIONAL AIRPORT
A380-FRIENDLY FACILITIES Two runways and three taxiways were widened to accommodate the A380 at a cost of US$30 million. In addition, gates E1 and E3 in Concourse E have been retrofitted to offer two-level boarding – ideal for the double decker.
CARRIERS THAT DEPLOY THE A380 Korean Air began deploying the superjumbo to Atlanta last year, while Air France is considering doing the same starting with the new winter schedule – it currently serves US Midwest gateway with daily B777 and B747 services.
THINGS TO DO AT THE AIRPORT As the busiest airport in the world, there’s no end to what you can do at Hartsfield-Jackson. British Airways, Delta and United all operate lounges at the airport, while there is also a common use lounge facility called The Club at ATL. For those feeling a little peckish, consider visiting the mega-food court at Concourse D, which offers 15 dining outlets. Highlights include 40/40 Club – a bar concept by music performer Jay-Z, and Grindhouse Killer Burgers.
DUBAI INTERNATIONAL AIRPORT (Concourse A in Terminal 3)
A380-FRIENDLY FACILITIES Where do we even begin? Built as the world’s first purpose-built A380 facility, the 11-storey Concourse A offers 20 gates and 13 remote stands exclusively for Emirates’ flagship A380 aircraft.
CARRIERS THAT DEPLOY THE A380 Emirates is the sole operator out of Concourse A and it only makes sense, given the Gulf carrier currently has a total of 50 superjumbos in its fleet – the most of any carrier in the world – with an additional 90 on order.
THINGS TO DO AT THE AIRPORT The facility offers 528,000 sqm in floor area and exclusively serves Emirates' A380 passengers (along with its new global partner Qantas) with expanded duty free shopping, dining options, the full-service Timeless Spa, hotels and other amenities. Among the most outstanding features of this facility are perhaps the lounges. The business class lounge has an astonishing seating capacity for 2,550, while the first class lounge is able to accommodate an equally impressive 1,491 passengers.
Dominic Sebastian Lalk & Clement Huang