Etihad to upgrade Melbourne flights to new Boeing 777-300ER

By David Flynn, February 25 2013

Etihad Airways will boost its daily Melbourne flights with the debut of a new Boeing 777-300ER to replace the current Airbus A340 on the Melbourne-Abu Dhabi route.

Just don't get too excited: the move's some nine months away, with the big bird set to take wing on December 1st.

And if you're not travelling at the pointy end you'll be in for a squeeze: the Boeing 777's economy seats are roughly an inch narrower than their A340 counterparts, and are arranged in a tighter 3-4-3 compared to the A340's 2-4-2.

But from Etihad's perspective this makes for an increase of 252 more seats per week, representing a 12.3% bump in capacity – a move which Etihad Airways President and CEO James Hogan says is driven by Melbourne's star performance.

“Melbourne is one of the best-performing routes in our global network, and has the highest passenger load factor of our three Australian destinations,”  Hogan explains.

“Victorians are not only flying with Etihad Airways to Abu Dhabi, an emerging business and leisure destination, but also on to destinations in the Gulf region, Middle East, Europe and Africa."

"Our decision to increase capacity between Melbourne and Abu Dhabi reflects not only the growth we have achieved so far, but also our confidence in the Victorian market.”

For the latest information for business travellers and frequent flyers, follow @AusBT on Twitter.

David

David Flynn is the Editor-in-Chief of Executive Traveller and a bit of a travel tragic with a weakness for good coffee, shopping and lychee martinis.

Etihad

23 Jan 2013

Total posts 175

The 777 business product is very good - a massive step up from the old 340s. I notice on flights departing Sydney in the near future that the 340s have all but disappeared and have been replaced by 777s. 

Qantas - Qantas Frequent Flyer - Silver

15 May 2012

Total posts 31

The late evening departure of the Etihad flight from Sydney is now operated by a Boeing 777-300ER, a move which was silently played by Etihad, I wonder why?

KG
KG

Qantas - Qantas Frequent Flyer

10 May 2011

Total posts 736

A T7 for EY means no F class anymore? Similar to TG and MH they are now offering only business and eco? Basically leaving QF and EK as well as SQ being the only ones offering the "real" pointy end.... Interesting that EY is leaving the scene as they are the only one challenging EK on the Middle East route towards Europe.

Etihad

23 Jan 2013

Total posts 175

The recent 777 flight I was on was 3 classes. That was LON-AUH.

KG
KG

Qantas - Qantas Frequent Flyer

10 May 2011

Total posts 736

Just checked tjeir fleet and 3 out of 13 777-300ER's are equipped with F class indeed. If EY is now also using the T7 on Sydney as suggested above they are plying all three birds on an Australia rotation (if they intend to offer F class of course). However, if you had F on your 777, it means it cannot be flying on the Australia routes....

Qantas - Qantas Frequent Flyer

06 May 2012

Total posts 169

Im a little confused here. Flew J with Etihad last year on the A330 DUB-AUH and liked J product. Is it the same business product on the 777 (the one that has been reviewed on AUSBT) Also im not sure why they would not offer F on the long 14plus hour AUH - MEL route, i was actually looking to fly next year in F from AUH-MEL. I would have thought that it would be a good performing route for F.

Thai Airways International - Royal Orchid Plus

16 May 2011

Total posts 116

EY is not ceasing F from MEL, the 773ER's operating AUH-MEL will have 8 Diamond First Class seats.

If anything EY is preparing MEL for A380 services !

Qantas - Qantas Frequent Flyer

06 May 2012

Total posts 169

Thanks Andy H

Virgin Australia - Velocity Rewards

26 Feb 2013

Total posts 2

The Boeing 777-ER that Etihad Airways will operate on the Melbourne-Abu Dhabi route from December 1 and already operates on its evening departures ex Sydney has a three-class cabin. That's eight seats in Diamond First class, 40 in Pearl Business class and 280 in Coral Economy class. The airline's A380s will come into the fleet in the last quarter of 2014. The Australian route will be among the first to see the airline's A380 in scheduled service.

Qantas - Qantas Frequent Flyer

18 Oct 2012

Total posts 122

They have also started a code share with Alitalia which I would suggest should add to seat numbers out of MEL & SYD (about time.)

So the Abu Dhabi to Melbourne route is still a mish mash pot luck when it comes to the business class seating? the brown seat vs the turquoise seat.

Virgin Australia - Velocity Frequent Flyer

18 Apr 2013

Total posts 23

Hi Everyone, just wondering if EY are still on track with introducing 777 on the MEL-AUH route from December 1st?

Etihad

23 Jan 2013

Total posts 175

According to their website and other flight booking websites, yes. 

By the end of 2014 it looks like e 777s from SYD and MEL to AUH will be replaced with A380s. Apparently, the EY A380 will have a few big surprises at the pointy end - enough to shake Emirates as the bringer of luxury to the skies. 

So I heard by chance. That said, one man's view of a big thing might not be another's. 

Im looking forward to flying the 777 out of SYD next year. Nicer than the A340s in my view. 


Hi Guest, join in the discussion on Etihad to upgrade Melbourne flights to new Boeing 777-300ER