EXCLUSIVE | Emirates is forging ahead with plans for two-class Airbus A380s: dropping the airline’s prestigious first class suites and showers from some of its superjumbos, while also shrinking business class in favour of more seats for economy passengers.
As previously reported, the two-class A380s will debut on Dubai-Copenhagen flights from December 1 as EK151/152 as well as the EK376/377 Dubai-Bangkok service from the same date.
An Emirates spokesperson has also confirmed to Australian Business Traveller that this will be followed on January 1 2016 with the EK342/343 service between Dubai and Kuala Lumpur.
Further, the EK9/10 service between Dubai and London Gatwick is also displaying the two-class configuration in the Global Distribution System (GDS) from the New Year, although this remains subject to change.
The seat map for Emirates' superjumbo sans first class shows that the economy passengers will now find themselves at the pointy end of the plane, with the 14 first class suites at the front of the upper deck – and a sizeable chunk of the business class cabin – making way for 120 economy seats spread across 16 rows.
18 of those business class seats have been axed, trimming the revamped A380's premium cabin count from 76 seats down to 58.
Seat numbering will still begin at row 6 (below), however this will be physically located where row 11 is now.
The five-row mini-cabin at the rear of business class has been rebadged to rows 19-23 in place of rows 22-26 on the three-class A380s.
The airline’s inflight bar and lounge for business class passengers will also be retained at the very back of the upper deck.
The new upper deck economy cabin begins at row 24 in the space currently occupied by Emirates' first class suites...
… and is joined by two extra sets of economy seats on the lower deck in rows 52 and 53, taking the place of a galley used by the crew on all three-class A380s:
It also seems that Emirates' new two-class A380 birds won't include the ‘ultra long-haul crew rest’ on the lower deck, which ordinarily replaces the centre group of economy seats in rows 85 through 87:
This walled-off space contains nine bunks, each with a curtain for privacy and a personal entertainment system to help pass the time.
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About Chris Chamberlin
Chris lives by the motto that a journey of a thousand miles begins with a single step, a great latte, an opera ticket and a glass of wine!