Home -> Trip Report -> London (LHR) to Abu Dhabi with Etihad in Business Class

Route : LHR-AUH

Airline: Etihad (EY)

Cabin Class: Business

Equipment : Airbus A340-500

Flight Number: EY 18

Seat Number: 10D


Date: September 25, 2013

Departure time in London (LHR): 21:10

Arrival time in Abu Dhabi (AUH): 7:15

*This is an award travel, Business Class flight #32


Text and Photography by Arthur Jeciel


October 12, 2013 Well, this is it! I have been longing to fly business class on Etihad for quite sometime now since I have already tested the other two Gulf Carriers before: Emirates last September and Qatar Airways for the past years. As expected, this flight gave me an opportunity to see how it competes with other airlines basing it on the service, business class seats features and the overall experience.


Before boarding, I was able to take a picture of the Airbus 340-500 which would fly us to Abu Dhabi that night. Abu Dhabi was the first city I have been to outside of the Philippines so it actually has a special place in my heart.


Etihad is known to board their premium passengers really early (about an hour before) so when we came onboard, most of the first and business class passengers were already there.


For a separate review of this simple yet elegant lounge, please click here.


After everyone has boarded, I couldn't see any empty seat (the cabin has 28 seats) so this was definitely a full flight. Chatting with Bianca, the Filipina flight attendant who took care of our side of the cabin, I learned that the first class cabin was also full. That's the way to do it, Etihad!

Welcome to Etihad Airways

As soon as I settled in to my seat, hot towels were distributed.

After a few minutes, Shayne, the Food and Beverage Manager came to my seat and introduced himself and then took my order for the predeparture drink. This time, it was a glass of Lanson Black Label Brut NV!

I also got the amenity kit which consisted of a raw cotton product pouch, Korres skin care products, a toothbrush and toothpaste, an earplug and a care kit with cotton buds, pads and emery board.

The blanket and eyeshades plus socks were already placed on the foot rest when I came to my seat.


About a few minutes after take off, the seat belt sign was turned off and the crew sprung into action, starting with them taking the orders for the dinner service.

But just before the service, I was served a glass of carrot juice and a bowl of mixed nuts which I had previously ordered from Shayne.


Arabic Mezze

a selection of Middle Eastern hot and Cold appetisers

For starters, I thought I ordered the sweet corn soup with cream but when Shayne came, he had this plate of Arabic mezze served to me and then left without saying anything. Well, the positive side was it actually tasted superb and that I could have actually liked it more than If I had received the soup. Aside from the mezze and soup, there was also the Buffalo mozzarella with lime marinated figs, fennel and balsamic reduction.


Medley of seafood

prawns, scallops, Salmon and halibut with saffron sauce, turned steamed potatoes and leeks

As for my main course, I chose the Medley of seafood. I am not a big fan of saffron but I still tought the dish was excellent. The other choices were Baked chicken breast stuffed with brioche and celery, with vegetables, rosemary new potatoes and jus; Arabic lamb ragout with aromatic spiced couscous and ratatouille; and Vegetable cannelloni with roasted cherry tomatoes, basil and Parmesan.


Seasonal fresh fruit with saffron syrup

Among the dessert choices were Warm date and fig pudding with cream; Passionfruit and mascarpone mousse with raspberry coulis; a selection of ice Cream flavours; and of of course my choice, a plate of seasonal fresh fruits.


From the Kitchen Anytime menu, the choices were the following:


Chicken sandwich, red pepper, courgettes and mustard mayonnaise

A selection of international cheeses

A selection of ice cream flavours

Potato crisps - selection of flavours

Baked cookies and mMadeleines

Swedish crisp breads

Arabic baklava


The menu for A La Carte Breakfast is as follows:


A selection of breads and pastries

Mango-coconut smoothie

A range of breakfast cereals with full-Cream or low-fat milk

Toasted English muffin with scrambled eggs, spinach and mushrooms

Natural yoghurt with granola and berries

Seasonal fresh fruit with saffron syrup


My "Pearl Business" seat 10D was an aisle on a "divorced seat".

In case you are wondering how a "lovers seat" looks like, here it is!

The seat control which offers lots of mode to choose from. And of course, the massage function!

With 6 ft 1 inch flat bed on a privacy shell, I was able to get a decent amount of sleep during the flight.


The 15-inch entertainment screen is in par with other airlines offering.

The noise-cancelling headset was okay but I thought the entertainment control was not that user friendly. Just before leaving the aircraft, I had the opportunity to check out the First Class cabin (with the help of Bianca of course) and I was told that the headphones for first passengers were really of high quality. I guess I have to aim flying in first class next time to find out if it is true.

Toilet and Lavatory

The toilet and lavatory was always kept clean. They also have some Korres handcream and face mist which I loved.

Arrival at Abu Dhabi International Airport

Well, not just yet. I told you I was informed by Bianca earlier that as soon as the First class passengers have left, she would tour me around the first class cabin and show me its features. Well, it was actually very tempting and the closed doors reminded me of Emirates' private suites. So which one is better? I really hope to fly this class soon enough so I could answer this question.



From the lounge experience until the time I was leaving the aircraft, I have to say I was really impressed. The food tasted excellent, the service was top notch and of course the overall experience was definitely a memorable one. If I were to compare this with my business class flight on Emirates from Bangkok to Dubai earlier this month, I would say Emirates is the winner but only with a very slight margin. Till next time! Shukran Etihad!


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