SkyTeam alliance member Korean Air will bring its Boeing 747-8 aircraft onto Sydney-Seoul flights from later this year, before returning its Airbus A380 superjumbo to Australian skies.
From September 1 2017 from Seoul (and September 2 from Sydney) through to the end of October, the Boeing 747-8 'stretched superjumbo' replaces the smaller Airbus A330 on Korean's daily KE121/122 flights in what's believed to be Australia's first scheduled Boeing 747-8 passenger flight.
On board, Korean Air's modern jumbo brings with it six of the latest Kosmo 2.0 Suites in first class...
... configured in a 1-1 layout down in the nose, extending to form a 79-inch (200cm) fully-flat bed and with sliding 'louver doors' that provide a one-way view from the suite into the aisle, while obstructing any peering eyes in reverse:
With a seat measuring a comfy 24 inches wide, there's plenty of space around the suite to store your gear, plus an HDTV on which to enjoy movies and TV shows: operated via a separate touchscreen controller:
In business class: Prestige Suites arranged in a 2-2-2 layout on the lower deck and in a 2-2 fashion on the upper deck, with each seat staggered to provide direct aisle access to every passenger: even those closest to the windows.
Expect to find fully-flat beds here too, with 74 inches (187cm) of total space between each row to stretch out:
Come October 29 2017 (or October 30 on flights departing Sydney), Korean Air's Airbus A380 takes over – instead with first-generation Kosmo Suites in first class, found in a 1-2-1 layout:
They still feature fully-flat beds, but with less privacy owing to the absence of closing doors:
Korean Air's Airbus A380 business class is also a step behind the Boeing 747-8, with seats in a straight 2-2-2 layout rather than staggered:
That finds passengers in the window seats stepping over their seatmates to access the aisle, and those in the outer aisles being stepped over themselves.
To compensate, high flyers can visit one of two in-flight lounges not seen on the regular jumbo – the first being a smaller space at the front of the aircraft...
... and the second the larger Celestial Lounge and cocktail bar at the rear of the upper deck:
The superjumbo will then remain on Korean Air's Sydney-Seoul flights until at least the end of 2017: as far forward as the airline's booking system currently extends, with bookings for Boeing 747-8 and Airbus A380 flights now available via the Korean Air website:
From Sydney, flight KE122 is wheels-up at 8:10am daily, reaching Seoul in time for dinner at 5:35pm, while on the return, KE121 takes flight at 7:20pm, arriving in Sydney at 6:15am the following morning.
Korean Air is also currently flying the Airbus A380 to Sydney as part of a seasonal upgrade, appearing on all flights until late March 2017 when the A330 resumes its post, ahead of these further September changes.