Perth’s globetrotters can once again enjoy some of the world’s best first class and business class experiences with Emirates and Qatar Airways both bringing their flagship Airbus A380s to the WA capital.
The mighty double-deck jets also add almost 300 seats per day to the skies, which will no doubt help more travellers get away to Europe, the UK, Africa and beyond – and hopefully continue to reduce pressure on sky-high airfares by rebalancing demand against supply.
Emirates says European cities make up eight of the top ten destinations Australians are currently flying to.
Topping the list is the UK followed by Italy, France, Greece and Ireland in the top five; Spain, Lebanon, Germany, The Netherlands and Turkey round out the leaderboard.
The A380 replaced Emirates; Boeing 777 on its daily EK420/EK421 service as of November 1 “due to the ongoing high demand for international travel in and out of Western Australia,” noted Barry Brown, Emirates Divisional Vice President Australasia.
While both the Airbus and Boeing jets boast private first class suites and well-appointed business class seats, the Emirates’s superjumbo adds inflight showers plus drinks at its signature upper deck cocktail bar.
However, unlike its Sydney counterpart, the Dubai-Perth A380 lacks the new premium economy cabin that’s now being steadily rolled out across the Emirates fleet.
Qatar Airways is likewise bringing some premium polish back to Perth, with its Airbus A380 – which of course spirts its own elegant inflight lounge and first class suites – making a return from December 6.
And while the A380 lacks the private Qsuites business class of the Boeing 777 it replaces as flights QR900/QR901, the superjumbo is certainly no slouch.
Its spacious and well-appointed flatbed business class seats still hold their own against most other airlines, as does the excellent in-flight dining…
… while the A380 adds the option of flying in Qatar's eight first class suites…
… and relaxing in the upper deck lounge with a drink, a meal and the company of fellow travellers.
A spokesperson for Qatar Airways tells Executive Traveller the changes from the Boeing 777 to the A380 is not a merely seasonal shift, with the aircraft being put in place “indefinitely for now.”
While Qatar Airways is a Oneworld member and thus a nominal Qantas partner, the Gulf carrier’s strategic partnership with Virgin Australia alsos unlock the A380’s suites and seats for purchase using Velocity frequent flyer points, along with lounge access for Velocity Gold and Platinum members.