While many people think that the A380 is dead, Emirates has just launched a brand new Premium Economy cabin product, together with enhancements and a refreshed look across all cabins onboard its newest A380 aircraft. As there is only one aircraft equipped Premium Economy will not be available for sale but will be given as a free upgrade to high status customers which is a lovely gesture.
Sir Tim Clark, President Emirates Airline said: “The Emirates A380 is already one of the most sought-after travel experiences in the skies, and now we’ve made it even better. While others cut back, Emirates is working hard to restore the products and services that we’ve had to suspend or adjust due to pandemic precautions, and introduce new offerings and enhancements. True to our fly better promise, Emirates continues to invest to offer our customers the best possible experience.”
The airline received its newest A380 aircraft from Airbus’ Hamburg facility last week, and its remaining order of 5 A380s will also be delivered with premium economy cabins over 2021 and 2022. Emirates’ premium economy seats will also be installed on some of its Boeing 777X aircraft which are only due to join the fleet in 2023. Emirates is considering plans to retrofit its existing A380 fleet. Currently, only 3 or 4 A380s are flying for Emirates on the London, Paris, and Moscow routes.
Commenting on Emirates’ premium economy cabins, Sir Tim said: “Our Premium Economy product was carefully developed in keeping with Emirates’ brand positioning as a full-service airline of the highest quality. Our First, Business and Economy experiences reset industry standards when they were introduced, and we are confident that our Premium Economy will also make its mark as a distinct premium offering. Until we have a viable number of seats in our inventory to bring to market, we plan to offer the Emirates Premium Economy experience as a complimentary upgrade to valued customers. We’ll also deploy our newest A380 aircraft on various routes so that our customers can experience our latest offering in all classes.”
Emirates will announce details of where its A380 aircraft with Premium Economy will be deployed in the coming weeks.
Premium Economy: comfort and space
Emirates today unveiled details of its highly-anticipated premium economy cabin, which offers 56 seats in a 2-4-2 cabin layout. With a generous pitch of up to 40-inches vs BA’s 38″, Emirates’ premium economy seat is 19.5 inches wide, and reclines 8 inches into a cradle position with ample room to stretch out. Covered in cream-coloured anti-stain leather with stitching details and a wood panel finishing similar to Business Class, each seat is designed to provide optimal comfort and support with 6-way adjustable headrests, calf rests and footrests.
I generally would not opt for Premium Economy, however, I have to say these seats look very impressive. The main issue for me is leg support which you don’t tend to get much of in most Premium economy seats as they just have a footrest bar. With the Emirates seats, they all have leather calf rests as well as a footrest. I would definitely consider these seats for a day flight if the price was right.
Each seat has a 13.3” screen, one of the largest in its class. I like the look of the side cocktail table which looks more like something you would find in business class. There are also easily accessible in-seat charging points and a wide dining table. It is also good to see that Emirates have gone with a more sophisticated look with less bling than the previous A380 decor.
Emirates Premium Economy is located at the front of the main deck, with 3 lavatories dedicated to customers.
Watch the video to see more of Emirates’ Premium Economy seat.
First Class: even more privacy and luxury
On this latest Emirates A380, the airline’s 14 First Class private suites have been enhanced from the original suites, being slightly wider with taller doors, for even more privacy and comfort.
Cabin detail and finishes have also been refreshed with new motifs and colours, from the sweeping stairs that lead from the main deck to the upper deck, to refreshed design trims and modern fittings in the Shower Spa.
Business Class: new luxury finishes
Emirates has retained its popular A380 Business Class seats which offer direct aisle access for every passenger, reclines to a fully-flat position, and offers personal mini bars, ample personal storage and a high degree of privacy. You can read my review here. Due to the layout with direct aisle access, it is the only Emirates business class I will fly.
All 76 seats have been refreshed to feature champagne-coloured leather covers and wood finishing, inspired by executive jets, similar to the Business Class on Emirates’ Boeing 777 Gamechanger aircraft. This is an improvement from the very blingy previous iteration.
The same classic colour scheme has also been applied to the Onboard Lounge at the back of the upper deck, for the exclusive use of First and Business Class passengers.
Economy: new seats
Emirates has replaced all 338 Economy seats onboard its newest A380 with ergonomically designed seats that come with full leather headrests and flexible side panels which can be adjusted vertically for optimum support.
This latest seat model is a step up from the version currently installed on Emirates’ Boeing 777 Gamechanger aircraft. It is lighter, without apparently compromising on comfort or function. Each seat features a wood grain finish on tray tables, as well as a 13.3” personal screen to enjoy Emirates’ entertainment.
Refreshed cabin interiors
Throughout the Emirates A380 interior, customers will see new finishes and design touches featuring the Ghaf (prosopis cineraria) tree motif, as well as the clean and airy champagne colour scheme with wood panelling and bronze accents from Emirates’ latest Boeing 777 Gamechanger interiors.
An indigenous evergreen plant, the Ghaf is considered the national tree of the United Arab Emirates, and has cultural and ecological significance.
All cabins have the latest generation of Emirates’ inflight entertainment system offering improved image quality. Each in-seat screen will feature ultra-wide viewing angles, a capacitive touch screen, LED backlight and full HD display.