The industry is eagerly looking forward to getting the inside story on how Emirates plans to configure its A380 aircraft. The interior will be revealed later this month, ahead of the inaugural flight on August 1, when a Dubai-New York JFK flight marks the aircraft’s revenue service debut to the US.

Meanwhile, Singapore Airlines plans to use delivery of its fifth A380 to begin the first revenue services to China, although it will only be for a short interlude. From August 2-8, the aircraft will be deployed to Beijing, to cater to the increased demand in the lead-up to the start of the Olympic Games.


Emirates will become the second A380 operator to launch revenue services using the type. Its A380 interiors and onboard product have been kept strictly under wraps to date and will finally be revealed for the first time when the airline receives its first A380 from Airbus’ Hamburg facility on July 28. The 58 A380s on Emirates’ order book are worth $18.8 billion at current list prices.

The Dubai-based carrier also plans to showcase the A380 during exclusive familiarisation flights in San Francisco and Los Angeles immediately after the inaugural flight of the aircraft from Dubai to New York. Invited guests from San Francisco and Los Angeles will have the opportunity to view the A380 before it begins three-times weekly service from Dubai to New York.

“The A380 familiarisation flights will give guests from San Francisco and Los Angeles a chance to feel and experience the new aircraft as well as learn more about Emirates' world-class amenities and comforts,” says Nigel Page, senior vice president, commercial operations, the Americas.

“We are very proud to be the first airline to bring the A380 to North America as a commercial service and consider this a milestone for the aviation industry. We are also delighted to be able to offer access to the aircraft on both the east and west coasts of the United States,” adds Page.

The third airline to begin A380 services will be Qantas whose first revenue service flight with the type will be from Melbourne to Los Angeles on October 20. The airline plans to begin flights from Sydney to Singapore and London with the A380 from early 2009.

“All four classes of the A380 will offer passengers greater levels of space and comfort, as well as state-of-the-art interiors designed by Qantas Creative Director Marc Newson,” Qantas Group general manager sales and distribution, Rob Gurney said.

The Qantas A380 will be configured with 450 seats - 14 individual First Suites, 72 in Business, 32 in Premium Economy cabin and 332 in Economy.

Source: Flight International