Etihad brings Boeing 787-9 onto Perth-Abu Dhabi route

By Chris C., June 2 2016
Etihad brings Boeing 787-9 onto Perth-Abu Dhabi route

Virgin Australia partner Etihad Airways has upgraded its daily Perth-Abu Dhabi flights to the Boeing 787-9, with WA's business travellers set to enjoy a superb experience on the 11 hour flight.

Replacing the airline's previous Airbus A330-200 jets, the Dreamliner brings with it inflight WiFi and Etihad’s latest ‘Business Studio’ business class seats…

… which promise up to 20% more space on-board per passenger than the airline’s A330 business class (below):

Like the A330, the Business Studios provide direct aisle access for every passenger in a 1-2-1 layout, but with its fully-flat beds stretching up to 200cm in length to cater for taller travellers.

Etihad's Business Studios, flying to Perth on the Boeing 787-9
Etihad's Business Studios, flying to Perth on the Boeing 787-9

Read: Etihad Airways Boeing 787 business class

However, Etihad’s first class suites  won’t be available from Perth. Instead, Perth will get one of the newer batch of two-class Dreamliners configured solely with 28 'Business Studio' business class seats...

... and 271 economy ‘Smart Seats’, which boast a clever fixed-wing headrest to maximise your space and comfort while keeping your seatmates’ heads off your shoulders.

“Since launching flights between Perth and Abu Dhabi two years ago we have enjoyed strong two-way demand from business and leisure travellers on the route" said Etihad Airways Senior Vice President of Marketing, Shane O’Hare.

“The Dreamliner, which adds 518 weekly seats to the route, gives us the extra capacity needed to meet this ever-increasing demand."

Also read: Etihad opens new flagship First Class lounge at Abu Dhabi

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Chris C.

Chris is a a former contributor to Executive Traveller.

Qantas - Qantas Frequent Flyer

14 Oct 2015

Total posts 16

Can't wait to see this magnificent bird fly into Perth, just saw EY486 fly over and thought to myself "when will Etihad bring the 787 to Perth" only minutes later I get this awesome news


good job EY

I'd have thought PER - AUH would be more of a 787-10 route (since PER doesn't need the range of a 787-9) but given they're opting for a high-density configuration (299 pax!) I guess the 787-9's range isn't TOO excessive. Plus, the shorter nature of the route compared to BNE - AUH means the decision to not have First Class from PER arguably makes sense.

Also, Etihad clearly want to bring their best product to the Australian market (obviously to compete with QF and Emirates) so I can see why they updated PER to the 787-9 now rather than wait for a 787-10 later.


13 Jun 2015

Total posts 141

Boy oh boy wowee! Extremely good news for Perth travellers flying to Abu Dhabi and beyond! You beauty!

25 Sep 2013

Total posts 1245

A welcome upgrade of equipment but interesting that they've decided PER doesn't merit a first cabin while BNE does.

First Class sells more on longer routes. PER - AUH is substantially shorter than the 14-hour BNE - AUH route. In addition, PER has a slightly lower population than BNE, and BNE is also the closest international airport to the Gold Coast which has a degree of high-end tourism (moreso than PER).

25 Sep 2013

Total posts 1245

The Gold Coast is considered a high-end tourist area? LOL

I stated that the Gold Coast has "a degree of high-end tourism." Palazzo Versace is not a cheap hotel after all.  

25 Sep 2013

Total posts 1245

Price has little to do with luxury. The opposite of luxury isn't poverty. It's vulgarity.

06 Jan 2015

Total posts 66

Fantastic news!

Qantas - Qantas Frequent Flyer

21 Aug 2014

Total posts 502

So Sydney and Melbourne get the A380 while Brisbane and Perth get the 787, sounds good to me,


19 Sep 2013

Total posts 203

Sounds good - a bit of competition now for Qatar and Emirates.

Qantas - Qantas Frequent Flyer

21 Mar 2013

Total posts 132

I like how they've put the new 787 products into the 2 states that finish all their sentences with 'EY'. Clever!

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