Etihad’s Airbus A380 vs Boeing 777 – What Plane Is More Comfortable?

When it comes to aircraft, Etihad likes to pull out all the stops in pursuit of the ultimate customer experience. Although it might be distinguished against other airlines, how does its own aircraft compare to each other? Ever wondered which widebody aircraft is more comfortable with Etihad? Let’s take a look at the Airbus A380-800 and Boeing 777-300ER.

Which aircraft is better?
Which aircraft is better: the A380 or 777? Photo: Etihad

How will we compare the aircraft?

Both the Boeing 777 and Airbus A380 help to build what Etihad calls one of the most advanced fleets in the world. These aircraft certainly have a lot going for them, and yet they’re so distinctly different. What Etihad’s Boeing 777 boasts in range, the Airbus A380 makes up for in capacity. When it comes to the number of aircraft though, Etihad sways towards the 777 with 19 aircraft in its fleet. That’s in comparison to ten A380 aircraft.

For our comparison, we’ll be looking at the interior of all three classes on each aircraft model, comparing space dimensions as well as additional fittings included for passenger comfort.

Let’s begin by taking a look at first class offerings from Etihad on its 777 and A380.

First class

Etihad offers the same seat pitch on both its Airbus and Boeing variants. The seat pitch in first class is 80 inches with a width of 29.5 inches. However, there is a difference when it comes to the seating arrangement for these aircraft. Whilst the Boeing 777-300ER has eight closed suites arranged over two rows, the Airbus A380 has nine. And that’s likely because of the A380 build.

The A380 benefits from a lower and an upper deck, unlike the 777-300ER, meaning that it has more available space for luxuries. And luxuries it does have. The aircraft boasts a three suite apartment called The Residence, complete with a bedroom, en-suite bathroom, and living room suitable for two people.

The Residence, Etihad
The Residence offers a three-room apartment in the sky. Photo: Travelarz via Wikimedia Commons

But that’s for those who can afford the creme de la creme. There are still benefits to first class non-Residency seats on the A380 that trump the Boeing 777, including access to a shower and a chilled mini-bar.

Winner: A380 – better amenities and a shower as well as the opportunity to fly luxury in The Residence.

Business class

Again, in Etihad’s business class, the offering in terms of seat dimensions is the same across the A380 model and the 777 model. The seat pitch is 73 inches with a width of 20 inches. However, the design of the aircraft really comes into play with the business class product.

The A380 has more space; it’s that simple. This means that it can offer 70 flatbed seats in comparison to the 40 offered by the 777. Despite that, both aircraft offer a privacy shell with a six-foot one-inch long bed, noise-canceling headphones, and built-in massage technology.

Winner: 777-300ER – whilst the offering within business class is the same, the reduced amount of seats might make your journey quieter on the 777. 

Etihad, 777-300ER
The 777-300ER might be better for peace and quiet. Photo: BriYYZ via Wikimedia Commons

Economy class

Once again, pitches are the same in economy class for both A380 and 777. Seat pitch is 31 inches with 17.5 inches in width. The A380 offers 415 seats whilst the 777 offers 282. There doesn’t seem to be too much of a difference between the seating in this class but there is a difference in the provision of services.

The A380, thanks again to its size, is able to offer a prayer room at the back of the economy seats for passengers on the lower deck. There are also more toilets on the A380.

Winner: A380 – though you’ll find more people in economy on the A380, there are better amenities meaning less time queuing for the toilet and better respect for the Islamic faith.

The bottom line

The sheer size of the A380 affords it the ability to offer a lot more across all three classes. However, there aren’t always benefits to share your journey with so many other passengers and the potential for more peace helps the Boeing 777 in some regard.

Overall, the A380 comes out on top for its amenities and accommodation of passengers.

Which aircraft do you think is more comfortable? Let us know in the comments below!