Etihad Airways must be really in the doldrums at the moment. They have been cutting a lot of costs over the past years, and now this has become a straight out route cut. Etihad cut flights to Dallas and San Francisco in the past year, apart from downgauging Mumbai from the A380 in 2017. Etihad made a $2 billion loss in 2016 on the back of investments in Air Berlin, and Alitalia went sour, and let go their CEO in the process last year.
Etihad is now planning to cut down one of their two daily Airbus A380 flights between Abu Dhabi and New York from October 1, 2018, onwards. They have been operating double daily flights to New York for a couple of years now. I’ve travelled on their A340s to New York, and also their A380 to NY on First Apartments as well as in Economy class, and I’ve always seen the planes to be full.
October onwards, Etihad Airways will operate a single daily flight between Abu Dhabi and New York as per the following schedule.
EY101 AUH0955 – 1610JFK 388 x2
EY102 JFK2255 – 2005(+1)AUH 388 x2
On Tuesdays, they will operate the flight with a 777 aircraft. The A380 relieved from this rotation will be put on a daily rotation to Paris, which will become an all A380 destination.
I am genuinely saddened to see the A380 go away from the New York rotation. Etihad Airways has one of the best A380 products with onboard showers and all the frills, and it is best suited to a route which is at least 12 hours long. Additionally, cutting away a whole route must have pinched, while Emirates is adding more flights, this time to Newark.
Have you been on Etihad Airways A380? How do you like their hard product?