Bloomberg have an article Emirates to Revamp First-Class Cabins With Focus on Privacy, which reports that Emirates will introduce a new first class product this year. Initially to be introduced on its Airbus A380 aircraft, the product will be subsequently rolled out across its Boeing 777 aircraft fleet.
We find the current Emirates first class seat to be a touch too narrow, with valuable space taken up by a massive side console with a mini-bar in it. As Emirates have a massive fleet of A380 aircraft, it will presumably also take time before the new product is widely available – given how many A380s Emirates fly to Australia, we should see the new product down under before the year is out.
It will be interesting to see what Emirates come up with. The Bloomberg article quotes Sheikh Majid Al Mualla, Emirates’ divisional senior vice president of commercial operations saying that the new product will be “more like if you’re in a railway and have a private cabin”. Sounds like Singapore Airlines Suites Class to us.
In other news, over at One Mile At A Time it has been noticed that Etihad have been subbing A380 operated services to instead be operated by Boeing 777 aircraft featuring its Diamond First product. This is likely caused by the delay in delivery of one A380. Flyers have been going out of their way to book on the Etihad A380 to experience its impressive looking new seating. Its important to note that Etihad haven’t proactively been reaching out to affected customers to manage expectations, so check your reservations.
It was also noticed first on FlyerTalk Forums that it is now possible to earn redeemable miles in AAdvantage, American Airlines’ frequent flyer program, for Etihad flights between Abu Dhabi and North America. Previously only Etihad flights booked as American codeshares were eligible. There has been no change to the earning of elite qualifying miles on those flights, you will still need a American codeshare, but the mileage earning will open up options for some.