The Airbus A350 represents a milestone in commercial aviation. Not only can the aircraft fly over 8,000nmi but does so using some of the most advanced technology available to the aerospace industry. As British Airways and Virgin Atlantic start to ramp up their respective A350 operations, we thought it necessary to hop across the pond and explore what Delta has been up to with their own XWBs.
The Delta A350 – the long-haul flagship
Delta’s A350 accommodates 306 passengers in three classes of service, significantly less than their British counterparts. Adding to the spacious cabin, business class passengers are accommodated in one of 32 Delta One Suites, while premium economy passengers can benefit from 48, 18.5-inch wide, Delta Premium Select seats.
Economy class also is not too shabby. The 226 seats, in a nine-abreast configuration, are 18 inches wide. That’s notably more accommodating than the now industry-common 10 abreast configuration on some Boeing 777s. According to Seat Guru, seats 41 A and J have nearly limitless legroom.
All classes of service can take advantage of in-seat power, WiFi, Satellite TV and, of course, a personal entertainment monitor.
Delta’s A350 routes
The vast majority of Delta’s A350s depart from Detroit onward to Asia and the Netherlands. The Airline also operates flights from Atlanta, Los Angeles, and Seattle to Asia. Here is a list of A350 routes:
– DTW to NRT (DL 275), departure 12:15, arrival 14:15+1
– NRT to DTW (DL 276), departure 15:25, arrival 14:09
– DTW to ICN (DL 159), departure: 13:50, arrival 16:30+1
– ICN to DTW (DL 158), departure 10:35, arrival 10:27
– DTW to PEK (DL 189), departure 13:32, arrival 14:45+1
– PEK to DTL (DL 188), departure 16:50, arrival 17:45
– DTW to AMS (DL 132), departure 16:30, arrival 05.55+1
– DTW to AMS (DL 133), departure 09:20, arrival 11:50
– ATL to ICN (DL 27), departure 00:31, arrival 04:00+1
– ICN to ATL (DL 26), departure 18:40, arrival 19:21
– LAX to PVG (DL 89), departure 13:00, arrival 17:50+1
– PVG to LAX (DL 88), departure 20:30, arrival 18:04
-LAX to HND (DL 7), departure 11:00, arrival 14:20+1
-HND to LAX (DL 6), departure 16:20, arrival 10:34
– SEA to NRT (DL 167), departure 11:32, arrival 13:30+1
– NRT to SEA (DL 166), departure 16:25, arrival 09:15
The Airline also plans to start A350 flights from Atlanta to Amsterdam and is considering flights from Minneapolis to Shanghai. As with all airline schedules, these can be subject to change, so do check your equipment before you book.
How to book
Flying Delta’s flagship can be an expensive endeavor, especially in the Delta One Suites.
From our quick research, we found that economy class on most routes can cost anywhere between US$780 to $1,600. Delta premium select can be had for an additional $500 to $600 above economy fares. As for Delta One, well, fares can range anywhere from $4,500 all the way up to $12,000.
Of course, there is always the option of spending miles and points. As a SkyTeam member, Delta has a great array of partners. If one doesn’t want to use Delta’s own SkyMiles program, why not look at Korean Air SkyPass or Air France-KLM’s Flying Blue scheme. Moreover, many of these programs are Amex or Capital One transfer partners.
Have you flown on Delta’s A350? Tell us about your experience. Do you think more airlines should install doors in business class? Let us know in the comments.