Etihad Airways has added Mumbai to its Airbus A380 network. Flight EY204 from Abu Dhabi landed at Chhatrapati Shivaji International Airport in Mumbai last night (May 1) on the celebrated occasion of Maharashtra Day, the 56th anniversary of the state’s formation. Mumbai becomes the airline’s fourth A380 destination following London Heathrow, Sydney and New York, with Melbourne set to join on June 1.
The choice of Maharashtra Day to launch the world’s largest passenger jet to India reinforced the airline’s commitment to the country; to meet an increase in demand for air services; and to support growing trade and tourism in India.
With the aircraft upgrade, Etihad Airways is able to offer an all-A380 daily service in both directions between Mumbai and New York JFK International with a seamless connection over Abu Dhabi, along with the unique USA customs border protection which enables guests to pre-clear US customs in Abu Dhabi. The service is operated as a codeshare flight with Etihad Airways’ strategic Indian partner Jet Airways.
James Hogan, Etihad Airways President and Chief Executive Officer, said, “Our commitment to India is unequivocal, having built a robust and successful route network with our own dedicated services and those of our partner Jet Airways which, combined, give us 20 per cent market share, making us the largest contributors of passenger traffic to and from India, bigger than any other international airline.”
The two carriers currently operate 254 flights a week from 15 destinations in India to Abu Dhabi and beyond to a wide network of cities across all Continents. Both carriers codeshare on each other’s services to and from India.
Neerja Bhatia, Vice President Indian Subcontinent, added: “We are delighted to showcase our innovative The Residence featuring a living room, shower and bedroom, and our revolutionary First Apartments and Business Studios on the new daily A380 Mumbai flights that give our guests the very best onboard experiences with unmatched luxury and comfort.
Etihad Airways’ A380 features a total capacity of 496 seats – up to two guests in The Residence, nine First Apartments, 70 Business Studios, and 415 Economy Smart Seats.
The airline has taken the finest details from the best service hospitality establishments around the world to redefine the A380 travel experience – from the comfort of a seat and finest cuisine to new inflight amenities and extensive entertainment options. Inflight chefs create a made-to-order dining experience from a larder of fresh ingredients for guests travelling in The Residence and First Class.