Due to noticeable demand, Etihad Airways has upgraded its services on three key Asian routes.
Flights between Abu Dhabi and two major Chinese cities – Shanghai and Chengdu – have been upgraded with next-generation Boeing 787 Dreamliners, while the airline has deployed its Airbus A380 ‘super jumbo’ on its route to the South Korean city of Seoul.
“Asia-Pacific is the fastest growing air transport region in the world and China is the fastest-growing individual market,” explained chief commercial officer, Etihad Airways, Robin Kamark.
“As we continue to modernise our aircraft fleet, and as we work with tourism partners to increase visitor numbers to Abu Dhabi, we are deploying newer, larger planes to key markets throughout our network.”
Chengdu, in south-central China is a city of 7.4 million people. Etihad Airways has upgraded its daily Abu Dhabi-Chengdu flights from 262-seat Airbus A330-200 aircraft to 299-seat Boeing 787s, enforcing a 14 per cent increase in seats.
Shanghai, China’s largest city with a population of more than 24 million, has been upgraded from Boeing 787-9 aircraft to larger Boeing 787-10 jets, seating 336 passengers – up 12 per cent.
Finally, Seoul, with a population approaching 10 million, has been upgraded from the Boeing 787-10 to the 494-seat Airbus A380, amounting to a massive 47 per cent increase.
With the upgrades of the Shanghai and Chengdu routes, Etihad Airways now operates Boeing Dreamliners to all four of its China gateways, having introduced these planes to Hong Kong and Beijing earlier this year. Recently, Dreamliners have also been deployed to London and Rome, and still to come this year, Etihad Airways is set to introduce these aircraft to markets including Frankfurt, Milan, Dublin, Johannesburg and Lagos.