Qantas has reached an agreement with Airbus to upgrade its 12 flagship A380 cabins to further improve passenger comfort on long-haul operations while maximising economics. In particular, the new interior takes advantage of the A380’s large floor area to most efficiently embody Qantas’ latest seat products for Business Class and Premium Economy.
Airbus will be responsible for the overall upper-deck integration. In addition, Airbus will develop specifically tailored monuments for Qantas and a new and unique business lounge area in the forward upper-deck. The installation phase will start in Q2 2019. All 12 aircraft are planned to be upgraded by around the end of 2020.
Didier Evrard, EVP Programmes Airbus Commercial Aircraft said: “We are very pleased to contribute to Qantas’ success and reputation by applying our innovation and proven expertise in designing and upgrading cabins to increase the efficiency and value of its A380 operations.” Evrard added: “This also shows the continued confidence of Qantas in the A380 as a key member of its fleet to offer its passengers a unique way to travel.”
The capacity of Qantas A380s after the upgrade will be 14 First Suites (unchanged), 70 Business Suites (up by six), 60 Premium Economy (up by 25) and 341 Economy (down by 30) for a total of 485 passengers (up by one). In particular, the upgrade will meet the airline’s increased demand for revenue-enhancing premium cabins on flights to the US, Europe, and Asia.
The A380 is the world’s largest, most spacious airliner that offers passengers the smoothest, quietest ride. Comfortably seating around 575 passengers on routes up to 8,200 nautical miles, the A380 has a unique ability to generate revenue, stimulate traffic and attract passengers. The A380 is the only aircraft which has two full decks, allowing it to offer wider seats, broader aisles, and more floor space. Over 170 million passengers have enjoyed the experience of flying on board an A380. Today 240 airports can accommodate the A380 around the world and every two minutes, an A380 either takes off or lands.
Qantas is the third airline to receive an Airbus A380 with its no 1 aircraft provide during September 2008.