Whats up from Abu Dhabi! I simply flew Etihad Airways’ Airbus A350-1000 enterprise class on the 13hr25min from Chicago (I booked this utilizing 70,000 American AAdvantage miles — what a deal!). This was my first time on Etihad’s latest jet, my first time experiencing Etihad’s new Armani / Casa facilities, and likewise my first time flying Etihad for the reason that begin of the pandemic.
Etihad has undergone some main modifications lately (for higher and worse), so I used to be curious to see how Etihad’s exhausting and gentle product stacks up. Effectively, I am completely happy to report that the expertise was phenomenal, and this ranks as one of many high enterprise class merchandise on this planet, for my part. I really feel like Etihad has its groove again, although in a barely extra sustainable method than in 2015.
Whereas I will have a full journey report quickly, on this submit I wished to share some preliminary ideas on the Etihad enterprise class expertise.
Etihad’s A350 enterprise class seats are high notch
Etihad’s Airbus A350s have personalized Collins Aerospace Tremendous Diamond seats with doorways. These are seats that have been first rolled out on British Airways’ A350s, and that is among the many greatest enterprise class merchandise on the market.
I believe most OMAAT readers have in all probability flown in a Tremendous Diamond seat (whether or not with or and not using a door), so know what these seats are like.
However what impressed me was the tech, which was phenomenal. The seats had all the most recent options, together with USB-A, USB-C, AC, and wi-fi charging, in addition to bluetooth audio.
Etihad’s cabin finishes are additionally attractive — I really like the colours, and I like how there aren’t any overhead bins within the middle part of the cabin, which create such a spacious feeling (and the facet bins are greater than massive sufficient for everybody’s carry-on baggage).
Whereas we are able to debate whether or not this constitutes a tough or gentle product, Etihad’s leisure and Wi-Fi on the A350 are additionally glorious. There’s an enormous number of motion pictures and TV reveals, in addition to stay TV. On high of that, due to a current constructive change, Wi-Fi was obtainable for your complete flight for simply $20, with no information caps, and speeds have been respectable.
The one factor in regards to the exhausting product that I did not like was the bathroom state of affairs. There have been two bathrooms on the entrance of the cabin, and that simply would not appear to be sufficient loos for a 44 seat cabin. There was typically a wait to make use of the lavatory, greater than there needs to be. For instance, Qatar Airways’ 777s have 42 enterprise class seats, and have 4 bathrooms.
Etihad’s enterprise class gentle product is great
Whereas Etihad has achieved some (justified) price reducing through the years, I believe the airline has now reached a fairly good steadiness. Etihad gives Armani / Casa facilities on its A350s, and I assumed they have been luxurious and purposeful. The bedding is from Armani / Casa, and is plush and comfy. Sadly the brand new Armani / Casa mattress pad hasn’t but been rolled out, however that needs to be coming later this 12 months.
So far as facilities go, Etihad nonetheless has an Acqua di Parma amenity equipment. I fairly just like the pouch, however it’s not notably effectively stocked.
Etihad gives dine on demand in enterprise class, and I discovered the meals to be exceptionally good. There have been an enormous number of choices served on lovely Armani / Casa tableware, and the crew did not appear to expire of something.
After takeoff I loved a glass of sauvignon blanc and a few blended nuts. I admire that wine is poured from the bottle at your seat.
For a starter, I chosen a scrumptious tuna tataki dish, which was among the many greatest tuna dishes I’ve had on a airplane. That was served with some bread and a facet salad.
Then for my foremost course, I chosen the vegetable kofta, which I additionally loved (I really like Indian vegetarian meals!).
For dessert I had a decadent chocolate fondant.
Then previous to touchdown, I had an açaí bowl with fruit and a croissant, which was a pleasant various to the standard airplane omelet or fruit plate.
Maybe what I appreciated much more than the meals was the non-alcoholic drink choice, together with superb cappuccinos and iced lattes. Yum, yum, yum.
The one a part of the gentle product that would have been higher can be pajamas and/or slippers. Pajamas are in fact good, however on some stage I take into account them to be a gimmick, as I do know they are a expensive funding for airways. Personally I do worth having slippers on a flight of this size, and need Etihad would carry these again. I do not like placing on my footwear each time I wish to go to the lavatory, so with the ability to use disposable slippers is beneficial.
Wonderful service additionally makes all of the distinction
Service on Center Jap carriers is usually a blended bag — typically it is distinctive, and typically it is simply okay. On this flight I lucked out with an incredible crew, overseen by cabin supervisor Nicolas from France. The crew could not have been extra attentive or element oriented, which is at all times a deal with.
This is likely one of the world’s high enterprise class merchandise
It is in all probability time I do a rating of enterprise class merchandise, however indisputably, Etihad’s A350 enterprise class ranks in my high 5 enterprise class merchandise globally, given the wonderful exhausting and gentle product.
I believe the query many individuals in all probability have is how Etihad’s new enterprise class compares to Qatar Airways’ enterprise class, which is in any other case typically thought to be being among the many greatest on this planet. To be sincere, each merchandise are glorious, and I would in all probability fly whichever product had a greater routing for my itinerary, together with factoring in connections. I will do a extra detailed comparability of the 2 merchandise after publishing my full overview.
I am so completely happy I lastly had the possibility to fly Etihad’s A350 enterprise class, and likewise expertise the brand new Armani / Casa gentle product. My love affair with Etihad was placed on pause a number of years again when the airline appeared to do infinite price reducing, although I am thrilled to see a constructive turnaround.
Etihad’s A350 gives a beautiful passenger expertise, by way of each exhausting and gentle product. From the seats, to the leisure and Wi-Fi, to the meals and drinks, to the facilities, my flight could not have been significantly better. I would fly Etihad’s A350 once more in a heartbeat.
Should you’ve flown Etihad’s A350 enterprise class, what was your expertise like?