New clues about Emirates’ new first class cabin may have just leaked via a seat map.
We’ve been awaiting details on the new Emirates first class cabin for some time. Shortly after Etihad unveiled their luxurious Etihad Apartment (which I believe is the top first class cabin available in the world), Emirates announced that it would be rolling out with a new first class product some time in 2015. Well, 2015 came and went and so did 2016 but with no new first class cabin from Emirates.
After the announcement of the newly designed bar on the A380, it was speculated that Emirates would announce its new first class cabin at ITB Berlin but that still didn’t happen.
However, via Points from the Pacific, it looks like Emirates’ new first class cabin seat map may have just leaked.
M3red from Flyertalk spotted a new seat map for the Emirates 777 flights between Dubai and Seattle and shows two rows with a 1-1-1 configuration for a total of 6 seats, similar to what Cathay Pacific has for its first class. The former first class layout for Emirates came with eight seats in a 1-2-1 layout.
This map is even showing up for OTAs with the following layout, leading many of us to believe that this isn’t a glitch.
This is odd for a few reasons.
First, it’s just an odd layout. I’m trying to wrap my head around how these suites would be designed but it’s difficult to imagine that with the layout. We know they are expected to have the feel of a private train cabin, so I’m picturing something like Singapore Suites, only more spacious and likely with more bling and tricked out features.
Perhaps these suites will assume the shape of some Tetris-inspired figure?
It’s also odd that a seat map would roll out before any official announcement from Emirates about the cabin. One possibility could be that this is the actual seat map but it just leaked prematurely. The map is showing up for flights as of December 1, 2017, which seems very soon considering we haven’t heard anything about this cabin. On the other hand, this really could just be glitch and not represent anything new and exciting.
Finally, it was discussed that the new cabin would roll out on the A380 before the 777, so it’s weird that we’re seeing this layout on the 777 first.
If this new layout is in fact the new first class cabin, I think this further marks the new trend of airlines cutting down the size of their first class cabins. It already looks like Singapore is going down 50% from 12 to 6 in its first class cabin and now potentially Emirates is as well. Meanwhile, other airlines like Qatar are focusing on improving their business class product and some speculate these new and improved business class cabins will eventually replace first class.
Daniel Gillaspia is the Founder of UponArriving.com and the credit card app, WalletFlo. He is a former attorney turned travel expert covering destinations along with TSA, airline, and hotel policies. Since 2014, his content has been featured in publications such as National Geographic, Smithsonian Magazine, and CNBC. Read my bio.