Emirates is soon to take delivery of a 2-class version of A380 with 615 seats (rather than more usual <530)
The A380-800 is the largest passenger airliner, which has a theoretical maximum certified capacity of 853 passengers (538 on the main deck and 315 on the upper), achievable with a one-class configuration. However, no airline has ever come even close to that number. Airbus says a “comfortable three-class” 525-passenger configuration” is possible, and a few airlines approach that. Emirates will start taking delivery of planes with 2 classes, seating 615 passengers, the most ever seen, and will start flying the plane between Dubai and Copenhagen in December. The Boeing 747-400 passenger plane can accommodate 416 passengers in a typical three-class layout, 524 passengers in a typical two-class layout. They typically carry between 350 to 400 people. Airlines with A380s include luxury facilities for first class passengers, such as in-flight showers, taking up a lot of space. Now some airlines are said to be considering not just the 10 seats abreast configuration as in economy class, but increasing to 11 seats abreast. However, it is understood that Emirates have dismissed the idea. The number of passengers per plane using Heathrow has risen. It is now around 214, compared to 209 in summer 2012 and 202 in summer 2011.
Sharing a plane with 614 other passengers is soon to become a reality
Some airlines are even considering an 11-abreast configuration on the Airbus, something that has not been used in any other aircraft
by Simon Calder (Independent)
The world’s biggest passenger plane, the Airbus A380, is finally to overtake the rival Boeing 747 for the highest number of passengers carried in scheduled flight. Emirates is soon to take delivery of a two-class version with 615 seats, and will start flying the plane between Dubai and Copenhagen in December.
The Boeing 747 Jumbo jet transformed aviation when it entered service in 1970 with a flight from New York to London. The plane typically holds 350 to 400 people, but a specially adapted version for Japan Airlines carried 563 passengers on short-haul flights.
The A380 “Superjumbo” started flying commercially in 2007. It is significantly bigger than the 747, and is certified to carry up to 853 people in an all-economy arrangement. But no airline has so far configured it with anything like that capacity. Korean Airlines has only 407 passengers on its Superjumbo, while some Air France jets carry 538.
A380 aircraft comes into lane at Heathrow Airport Emirates is the biggest customer for the plane, and has installed facilities for first-class passengers such as an inflight shower. At present the densest passenger configuration is a version seating 517. It includes 14 first-class seats, which in the new version are being removed to make room for seven times that number of economy seats. Many of Emirates’ routes do not have a high proportion of wealthy flyers or business passengers, and the thinking is that the new version is the most efficient use of on-board space.
The new configuration retains the 10-abreast economy class that is common to the A380 and the 747.
Some airlines are considering an 11-abreast configuration on the Airbus, something that has not been used in any other aircraft. But Emirates is believed to have dismissed the idea.
The highest number of passengers ever carried on a single aircraft is 1,122, aboard an El Al Boeing 747 in 1991 during “Operation Solomon,” to airlift Ethiopian Jews to Israel.
While the A380-800 is certified for up to 853 passengers (538 on the main deck and 315 on the upper), achievable with a one-class configuration, Airbus references a “comfortable three-class” 525-passenger configuration in their marketing material however few airlines have configured A380s with that many seats.
Of the planes currently in service, the passenger capacity ranges from 407 (Korean Air) to 538 passengers (Air France). In late 2015, Emirates will start taking delivery of planes seating 615 passengers, the most ever seen. Airbus offers 11-abreast seats for delivery in 2017.
Some airlines have speculated configuring the planes for higher seat numbers, including a one-class layout seating 840 people.
The 747-400 passenger version can accommodate 416 passengers in a typical three-class layout, 524 passengers in a typical two-class layout, or 660 passengers in a high density one-class configuration.
Heathrow data from ACL for the summer half year 2015 shows there was an average of 214 seats per plane, using Heathrow.
ACL data from other years at