What It’s Like to Fly Etihad First Class

By Nora Mathe

Etihad Airways is the second-largest airline in the United Arab Emirates, after Emirates Airlines. It was founded in 2003 and since then it has made itself a name with a 113-plane fleet and its incredibly luxurious first-class experience.

Etihad’s slogan is “from Abu Dhabi to the world”; they have flights to 81 destinations worldwide and serve the wealthy, with luxury experiences that would cost you a pretty penny.

Let’s have a look at 10 of the fanciest amenities the airline has to offer!

10. At the Airport


The luxuries of Etihad Airlines start before you even board the flight! At the airport, first and business class passengers have the possibility to spend their waiting time at the Etihad Lounge, an incredible, private space inside the airports.

@etihadairways / Instagram.com, @etihadairways / Instagram.com

The amenities it offers are vast: you have access to gorgeously designed lounge areas where you can order luxurious meals and drinks, you can use a private restroom and even a shower, and there is a room dedicated to children so they can busy themselves playing while the hours tick by. The lounge also offers a spa with massage chairs, calming facials, and there is a fitness room, too!

9. The Seat Selection


Etihad’s A380 offers the most spacious first-class cabins in the sky. The cabin comes with a massive seat facing a large TV screen, and under the TV, there is a long bench for any guests or flight partners you would like to have over. 

@etihadairways / Instagram.com, @etihadairways / Instagram.com

This bench turns into a bed, which is prepared by the crew members. The TV is not attached flush to the wall; it actually swivels so you may watch it either from your seat or from the bed, once it’s made. The suite also comes with a little closet for small hand luggage and your clothes, equipped with coat hangers. 

8. Dining


A first-class flight comes with a first-class meal (or feast, we should say); it’s not just one meal but many, depending on the length of your flight. Each Etihad chef is fully-qualified and internationally trained. For snacks, you get a trio of nibbles such as wasabi peas, nuts, and olives. 

@etihadairways / Instagram.com, @etihadairways / Instagram.com

The menu offers a large selection of dishes from soup to steak, but if nothing tickles your fancy, you can ask the chef to prepare you a meal you would like to eat. Guests report having salmon and steak, according to Upgraded Points. The chefs came up with dishes such as a special chicken with seasoned crust and a vegetable medley, just to please the passenger.

7. Amenities


Etihad’s first-class amenity kit is as luxurious as you would expect. The current kit comes from the brand Acqua Di Parma and offers a variety of products: the unisex cylinder bag contains a miniature bottle of Colonia, a 40ml body lotion, and lip balm. First Class toiletries include Colonia hand wash and hand cream, and Colonia bathroom amenity kits feature shower gel, body lotion, hair shampoo, and hair conditioner.

@etihadairways / Instagram.com, @etihadairways / Instagram.com

You also get noise-canceling headphones and basics such as a toothbrush, toothpaste, socks, eye mask, earplugs, and a razor.  

6. Service


Service on the Etihad’s first-class flight is praised all around. The flight attendants and crew members are friendly without being too overbearing; they are very attentive to their passengers and ready to offer help with anything and everything they can think of.

@etihadairways / Instagram.com, @etihadairways / Instagram.com

The chefs are trained professionals who come out to talk to passengers, ask about their preferences, and even come up with meals on the spot to make sure the guests are happy. Flight attendants are reportedly ready to offer you snacks, blankets, hot towels, and turn-down service. 

5. Lavatory and Shower


Etihad’s first class is equipped with two lavatories, one of which offers a shower as well. They are located in the front, in the galley of the plane. If you would like to take a shower, you need to schedule it in advance, so the crew can clean and prepare the space and put out fresh towels and products for you to use.

dailymail.co.uk / © Etihad, businessclass.co.uk / © Jacob Molin

Since this is still a plane in the sky, the water supply is limited, so shower time is restricted to 5 minutes, during which you can start and stop the water as you please. Since there are two bathrooms in first class, passengers who only wish to use the bathroom can do so while someone else takes a shower in the other space.

4. The Lobby


First and Business class passengers both have access to a space called “the Lobby”, an area that has a table in the middle, surrounded by two spacious, cushioned benches. The space is meant to put you at ease, with decorative sconce lighting that creates a warm and relaxing in-flight environment.

@etihadairways / Instagram.com

The aim of the Lobby is to give passengers the possibility to socialize easily, in a space that is bigger than the first-class cabins. You can hold a business meeting, order drinks from the bar, play cards and board games, or simply spend time with a larger group of people, in a comfortable space.

3. WiFi and Entertainment


Etihad’s E-Box is considered the best entertainment system in the sky, according to One Mile At A Time. They offer hundreds of TV shows and movies, and there is even live TV, so you shouldn’t get bored. 

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You can also have access to WiFi, although passengers noted that it’s pricey because they measure it based on data usage. So, you get access to 180MB of data for $20. Once you use that up, you need to purchase more data, but if you would like to stay in touch with people on the ground, it’s not a bad deal!

2. The Bar


The bar and its selection are praised widely: Etihad offers a specific wine with every meal, picked by the chef on board. The bar itself is located in the Lobby, but there is no bartender, so the crew is attentive to serve any passengers with whatever drink they would like to have.

dailymail.co.uk / © Etihad

The selection is large, from coffee to afternoon tea and booze, there is something for everyone. The crew serves up cocktails, champagne, coffee, and even desserts that go with afternoon tea. Of course, there is no need to spend time in the Lobby to get a drink! Flight attendants will bring your drink to your cabin, too. 

1. The Residence


Although reportedly it is never occupied, the Residence is the fanciest part of the A380 plane. The space is just like an apartment, meant to work like a hotel room, not a seat on an airplane. It is a three-room private suite, and it accommodates two people

@etihadairways / Instagram.com, @etihadairways / Instagram.com

The Residence has a living room that is similar to the first-class cabins, with a large sofa for two and a 24-inch screen. It comes with its own bedroom with a large bed and a TV in there, as well. The Residence has its own private bathroom and shower, which is very similar to the first-class bathroom, but this one is all yours!



Go to Buzz.Moneis.com for more entertaining articles about the lavish lives of the rich & famous.

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