Saturday - Dec 14, 2019

San Francisco to Abu Dhabi on Etihad First Class – Trip Report

Recently, one of our team member had the opportunity to travel on Etihad Airways flight EY182 from San Francisco to Abu Dhabi in First Class. This flight leave San Francisco at 9.35 AM and arrives in Abu Dhabi at 12:30 PM local time on the following day.


This is an award ticket booked about 1 week prior to travel. We redeemed 90,000 AAdvantage miles for a one way First class award to India on Etihad Airways plus $75 Close in booking fee and $5.60 taxes/fees.


Etihad is unable to get new planes at the pace they are growing, hence Etihad leased a Boeing 777-300ER aircraft from Jet Airways to operate in this route. This is an Etihad operated flight on Jet Airways configured flight, meaning flight is staffed with Etihad team on Jet Airways aircraft.


To give you a little perspective, a First class seat is about 4 windows in length. You could see in the below picture, the forward portion of the aircraft is the  first class cabin


EY 182 from San Francisco to Abu Dhabi

EY 182 from San Francisco to Abu Dhabi



This is a Boeing 777-3000ER long range flight with a total journey time of approximately 16 hours from San Francisco to Abu Dhabi. This is a 3 cabin flight with 8 First Class Suites, 30 Business class seats and 274 Economy seats.




EY 182 Seat Map

EY 182 Seat Map



On Taxi way for departure

On Taxi way for departure



Journey began with a welcome drink  followed by introductions. Lead flight attendant and onboard chef introduced themselves and explained the features of suite and provided the menu. We preselected Asian Vegetarian meal, otherwise you could order any meal in the menu at your convenience and is made to order.



Closed Suites

Enclosed Suites with direct Aisle access



Seat Controls

Seat Controls




You can have your own private space

You can have your own private space




Closet space to protect your coat

Closet space to hang your coat


You can request turn down service when you want to go to bed.


Get enough rest on your fully lie flat bed with comfortable bedding

Get enough rest on your fully lie flat bed with comfortable bedding


In Flight entertainment is equipped with a wide range of movies including several Indian films across various languages – Hindi, Tamil, Telugu etc..


Enjoy In-flight entertainment on a bigger screen

Ottoman and In-Flight Entertainment screen


Food is made to order and is presented nicely. Note that we selected Asian Vegetarian in advance.  We got a dinner and breakfast during this flight, however, you can request snacks from the menu when ever you like.


Asian Vegetarian meal : Made fresh to order



Asian Vegetarian Meal : Salad, Rice & Curry







We were surprised to get Vada, Upma and Sambar for the breakfast. However, Vada is not as soft as we would have liked.


Enjoy Vada & Pongal at 35,000 feet

Enjoy Vada, Upma & Sambar at 35,000 feet



You also get a Muffin for breakfast



Amenity Bag :

Etihad First class amenity bag is one of the best in the industry. Sougha is the provider of these bags, who works with the local artisans in UAE.

You get New York based Le Labo Bergamote 22 series toiletries, which included hand balm, facial moisturizer and lip balm.


Amenity bag with New York based “Le Labo” Toiletries



Hand made Emirati traditional bag




First Class Pajama


Etihad offers a kids entertainment bag in flight, which includes several activities to keep kids busy. Purser was very engaging and when we mentioned that the purpose of trip is a family visit, She quickly offered 2 bags to our kids even though we were not travelling with kids – which was a nice gesture.


Kids bag


How can you do it?

You need 90,000 miles for a one way first class award from USA to India on Etihad Airways. There are many opportunities to earn AAdvantage miles.

AAdvantage miles for opening a Citi Checking account

Citi AAdvantage Platinum select World MasterCard

CitiBusiness / AAdvantage Platinum Select World MasterCard




We had an excellent time on the first class cabin during our Journey from San Francisco to Abu Dhabi. You could a variety of food and drinks through out your flight. We will also write another post on Business class award on the same route.

It is possible to get a first class seat on Etihad Airways at a fraction of retail value (about $15,000) when you redeem AAdvantage miles for award tickets with Etihad.


Disclaimer:  Links mentioned in this post do not earn us any commission.

Editorial Note: Opinions, analysis and any calculations shown are authors alone. Information in this post is not reviewed, approved and endorsed by any airlines, frequent flyer programs or financial institution

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