Etihad to operate A380 flights to Sydney

27 Aug 2014 by Alex McWhirter

Etihad Airways has yet to take delivery of any of the ten A380s it has on order, but that hasn’t stopped the airline from revealing its superjumbo schedules.

A fortnight ago we revealed that Abu Dhabi national carrier intends to operate double-daily A380 flights into London Heathow next year (see news, August 14). Etihad today announced this will be increased to three-times daily.

And now comes the news that it will fly the superjumbo to Sydney.

Although details have not officially been made available here in the UK, Business Traveller can confirm that Etihad’s A380 Sydney service is set to commence on June 1, 2015.

It will be a daily operation — the plan is for the same A380 to operate right through from London Heathrow to Sydney with an enroute stopover in Abu Dhabi.

Such a through A380 service from London to Sydney will prove a hit with business travellers, as Emirates and Singapore Airlines have found.

It’s nothing new for an indirect carrier to have same plane A380 service to Australia — this is something that Emirates and Singapore Airlines started in the early days of A380 operations, although, to circumvent regulatory requirements, two flight numbers may have to be used.

Etihad’s A380s along with its new B787 Dreamliners will feature the carrier’s new corporate livery, which contrasts with the current “government-inspired” version.

So far, rival carrier Qatar Airways has not revealed any plans to introduce flights to Sydney. The Doha-based airline will remain in Melbourne for the time being.

Alex McWhirter

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