Flight Review: Etihad Business Class Hyderabad To Abu Dhabi

a plate of food on a table

***This is part 13 of my “Big Fat Indian Wedding” trip report detailing a recent trip to Singapore and India***

1. Introduction
2. United Global First Lounge at SFO
3. Singapore Airlines Krisflyer Lounge at SFO
4. Singapore Airlines First Class San Francisco to Seoul
5. Singapore Airlines First Class Seoul to Singapore
6. Conrad Singapore
7. Eating Singapore Part 1 – Flowers, Supertrees, and a River Safari
8. Eating Singapore Part 2 – Hawker Stands, Chili Crab, and Kouign Amanns
9. Dinner At Singapore’s Best Restaurant, Restaurant Andre
10. Premier Lounge at SIN, SilkAir Economy Class to Hyderabad
11. Part Hyatt Hyderabad
12. Exploring Hyderabad
13. Etihad Airways Business Class Hyderabad to Abu Dhabi
14. Etihad Premium Lounge at AUH
15. Etihad Airways (Jet Airways Config “Jetihad”) First Class Abu Dhabi to San Francisco

Even on partner mileage redemptions, Etihad provides chauffeur service for premium cabin passengers and this made for a relaxing start to our 24-hour journey home. Pick-up from our hotel was scheduled in advance, and I was very impressed with the logistics. Not only did we receive an email and phone call the day before to confirm, we also received about 2-3 text messages the day-of with updates on when the driver was expected to arrive.

We jumped into the sleek Mercedes S-Class, which definitely stood out like a sore thumb as we drove through the streets of Hyderabad on the way to the airport. We arrived at the airport only to find a complete zoo, and it took us over 15 minutes just to get from the curbside drop-off to the check-in counter.

Security was also a pain since they had separate lines for men and women, in completely different areas. So my wife and I had to coordinate a post-security meetup before braving the thorough individual security checks.

Once we were through, we headed over to the lounge, but not before making a stop at Karachi Bakery to pick up some Osmania Biscuits that one of our friends highly recommended.

karachi bakery hyderabad airport

karachi bakery osmania biscuits

The lounge was actually quite nice, and we grabbed a seat and hung out here for about an hour. The internet situation was a bit of a pain, since it required flagging down the attendant and getting an individual code via SMS.

hyderabad airport lounge 2

hyderabad airport lounge 1

Even though I wasn’t that hungry, I took a look at the food options which included some sandwiches and salads, along with a few hot food items.

hyderabad airport lounge food

hyderabad airport lounge food 2

hyderabad airport lounge food 4

hyderabad airport lounge food 3

It’s always exciting to try a new airline, and this would be our only chance to sample the “real” Etihad, since our flight home would be on the Jet Airways-configured version, which has earned the nicknamed “Jetihad” and carries with it a largely negative connotation.

We were among the first to board, and initial impression was that this was quite impressive for a regional Business Class product.

etihad business class hyd cabin

Already waiting for us at the seat were a blanket and pillow, along with an eyeshade.

etihad business class hyd seats

etihad business class hyd seats 2

The blanket was actually quite memorable and I’m not sure what it was made of but it appeared to be very high-quality and had an incredibly soft, almost velvety, feel to it.

etihad business class hyd blanket pillow

etihad business class hyd seat controls

There wasn’t any space for bags underneath the seat in front of me, so I had to place my backpack in the overhead compartments. Once I did that, there was plenty of legroom to stretch out.

etihad business class hyd legroom

Shortly after take-off, menus were distributed. At this point of the trip it was really unnecessary to eat anything on this flight, but I’m not exactly the type to skip a meal.

etihad business class hyd menu

etihad business class hyd beverages

etihad business class hyd beverages 2

etihad business class hyd alcohol

The meal service got kicked off with drinks.

etihad business class hyd drinks

I ended up ordering the fish sayadiya which was really good.

etihad business class hyd dinner

I fired up a movie to watch with my dinner.

etihad business class hyd tray table

The E-box system had some decent selections, but again nothing compares to the Emirates ICE system.

etihad business class hyd ebox screen

And the Arabic coffee cheesecake to finish which was delicious, along with a cappuccino.

etihad business class hyd dessert

etihad business class hyd coffee

Before I knew it, we were landing in AUH.

etihad business class hyd night landing

Overall, this was a great first experience with Etihad, and I’d like to fly them further in the future. Along with the food, the highlight of this flight was the service and the international crew on-board this flight took great care of us.

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