4 June 2016

Etihad brings the Dreamliner to Perth

  • Travellers will experience next-generation cabins
  • Flying Nannies and Food and Beverage Managers offer innovative hospitality services inflight
  • A 27% increase in Business Class capacity on the Perth-Abu Dhabi route
Etihad Airways has introduced Boeing 787-9 Dreamliners to Perth, Australia. Guests on the Dreamliner enjoy the industry’s largest windows; air that is cleaner, more humid and at a higher pressure for better comfort; large overhead stowage bins, soothing LED lighting; and technology to sense and counter turbulence for a smoother ride.

Etihad Airways flight EY486 took off from Abu Dhabi at 10.30pm on 1 June and arrived in the Western Australian capital at 1:50pm on 2 June, where it was welcomed by a water cannon salute. The return flight, EY487, will depart Perth in the evening at 5pm and arrive in Abu Dhabi at 12:25am the next day.

With 299 seats, the B787-9 Dreamliner delivers 14% more capacity than the Airbus A330-200 it replaces. In the high-demand Business Class cabin, it offers 27% more seats. Etihad Airways launched daily two-class Airbus A330-200 services to Perth in July 2014.

Etihad Airways Senior Vice President of Marketing, Shane O’Hare, said the decision to upgrade to the Dreamliner reflected the importance of Western Australia to Etihad Airways. “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. 

"The Dreamliner, which adds 518 weekly seats to the route, gives us the extra capacity needed to meet this ever-increasing demand. It also enables our guests to experience the luxury, comfort and hospitality for which Etihad Airways is world-renowned.

“Our Dreamliners, with ground-breaking innovations in all cabins, have raised the passenger experience bar, setting the benchmark in world aviation for superior comfort, entertainment, inflight connectivity, and service.”

The Etihad Airways B787-9 Dreamliner features 28 Business Studios and 271 Economy Smart Seats. The onboard d├ęcor and lighting have been inspired by contemporary modern Arabian design, complementing the airline’s Facets of Abu Dhabi livery.

The 28 Business Studios offer direct aisle access, a fully flat bed of up to 80.5" long, and an increase of 20% in personal space. Upholstered in fine Poltrona Frau leather, the Business Studio is equipped with an in-seat massage and pneumatic cushion control system which enables guests to adjust the firmness and comfort of their seat. Each Business Studio has an 18" personal touch-screen TV with noise-cancelling headsets.

The 271 Economy Smart Seats provide enhanced comfort with a unique ‘fixed wing’ headrest on each seat, adjustable lumbar support, a seat width of approximately 19", and an 11.1” personal TV monitor.

The Dreamliner fleet features the latest Panasonic eX3 entertainment system which provides more than 750 hours of on-demand entertainment including seven live TV channels, improved gaming and high definition screens across all cabins. The aircraft has full mobile and Wi-Fi service, with USB and power points at every seat.

The airline’s world-renowned hospitality offering includes innovative services such as Flying Nannies and onboard Food and Beverage Managers. A Flying Nanny, trained by Norland College in the UK, is on board every B787-9 Dreamliner flight to provide assistance to families travelling with young children. Food and Beverage Managers, handpicked from the world’s top hotels and restaurants, guide guests in Business Class through the extensive ala carte and dine-anytime options. 

Etihad Airways uniquely offers travellers from Western Australia the convenience of US Customs and Border Protection at Abu Dhabi Airport. This facility, exclusive to Etihad Airways in the Gulf region, allows guests to complete immigration, customs and security clearance procedures for the US while in transit at Abu Dhabi – avoiding lengthy queues upon arrival at US airports.

Beyond Perth, Etihad Airways offers connections to eight towns and cities in Western Australia in conjunction with codeshare partner Virgin Australia. The partnership enables guests to connect to Etihad Airways’ global network from Broome, Geraldton, Kalgoorlie-Boulder, Kununurra, Karratha, Paraburdoo, Port Hedland and Newman.

In addition to the WA capital, Etihad Airways serves Sydney with double daily flights, in conjunction with Virgin Australia; double daily flights to Melbourne; and daily services to Brisbane.

Perth is the second Australian city to be served by Etihad Airways’ B787-9 Dreamliner aircraft; Brisbane was the first in June 2015. In Asia, the Dreamliner is also deployed to Singapore. Services will commence to Istanbul and Shanghai in coming months.