Instead of sticking to one particular route, the refitted A380s will fly to various existing A380 routes on a random basis – Singapore, London, Los Angeles and Dallas/Fort Worth.
As explained by Alan Joyce, the CEO of Qantas, they “can’t dedicate them to one particular route (so) people will be surprised and delighted when they see the upgraded A380s.”
This is quite a clever play on words. It sounds like they are randomising it for the sake of bringing some surprise to the passengers. However, it is likely that they want to have the flexibility to schedule the refitted A380s to all possible A380 routes; this way they can keep their A380s in the air as much as possible, to keep the money rolling in.
Seat Updates On The Refitted A380
First Class Suite
Instead of a brand new First Class Suite, passenger should expect minor updates on the existing “open” design First Class Suite. Newson, who was in charge of designing the existing First Class Suite, will be working on a modest refresh for the cabin and materials. Passenger should expect more comfortable contoured cushioning and a larger HD screen.
One of the biggest revamps on the A380 would be in Business Class. The existing Skybed II seats, in a 2-2-2 seat configuration, will be replaced by the existing Business Suite currently fitted on the B787, in a 1-2-1 seat configuration.
With the Business Suite, you should look forward to having direct aisle access, more storage space and a brighter and sharper screen.
The number of Business Class seats will increase from 64 to 70. Among which the first five rows will have their own small cabin, right up at the front of the aircraft.
In addition the existing Business Class lounge on the A380 will be redesigned to create a cafe-inspired social space, where there will be padded benches with soft surrounding LED lighting for up to five passengers.
There will also be a second lounge next to the staircase, to fit in three passengers, along with a self-serve snack bar beside it. Currently this space is being utilised as a cabin crew office.
Premium Economy Class
The existing Premium Economy Class will also be replaced with the current Premium Economy Seat on the B787.
The Premium Economy Class cabin will have a 2-3-2 seat configuration. Although the latest seat product provides a better screen, more storage compartments and a tablet holder, the Premium Economy Class on the A380 will not have more legroom as compared to the one on the B787.
The Economy Class will also receive minor changes, such as new seat cushions and “improved inflight entertainment” which Qantas did not elaborate on. At least for now, we know that the A380 Economy Class will likely not be like those on the B787.
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H/T: Executive Traveler