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Emirates’ first revamped 777 takes off in August with ‘A380-inspired’ cabin — including premium economy

The start of July marks the beginning of a major project for Emirates. This week, the carrier will kick off a major, nose-to-tail cabin face-lift for its Boeing 777 fleet.

These retrofits will bring a myriad of interior improvements to the jets. Most notably, dozens of Emirates 777s will finally get a premium economy cabin — not to mention some much-needed upgrades to their business-class cabins.

The first refitted Emirates 777 will launch in early August, Emirates announced Monday. The refurbished cabin will appear on the airline’s Aug. 11 nonstop flights (EK83/84) from Dubai International Airport (DXB) to Geneva Airport (GVA).

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With each 777 refurbishment likely to take about two weeks, two other overhauled 777s are expected to enter service by mid-September. They will initially operate the airline’s nonstop Dubai service to Tokyo’s Haneda Airport (HND) on Sept. 1 (EK312/313) and Brussels Airport (BRU) on Sept. 11 (EK183/184).

Major retrofit plans

These cabin overhauls are part of a much larger interior refit program the Dubai-based carrier has planned.

In May, TPG reported 81 of the airline’s 777s, along with 110 of its Airbus A380s, will get cabin face-lifts over the coming years as part of a larger $2 billion investment.

Revamped 777 cabin

To go along with a refurbished first-class cabin, Emirates’ new 777 business-class cabin will include 38 new business-class seats. Notably, they’ll be arranged in 1-2-1 configuration, each with direct aisle access.

That’s a significant improvement over the 2-3-2 configuration you’ll find on many 777 jets nowadays — like this current 777-300ER business-class cabin map.

seat map

Each cabin on the refitted 777s will be “borrowing inspiration” from the airline’s flagship A380, the carrier said Monday.

That includes a staggered configuration in the business-class cabin, which you’ll find today on Emirates’ flagship superjumbos.

“The champagne leather seats match the ones on our latest Emirates A380, with their detailed stitching and soft cushioned headrests,” an Emirates spokesperson told TPG Monday.

Related: Getting my money’s worth in Emirates first class: Bottomless Champagne and endless caviar

On board an Emirates Airbus A380
On board an Emirates Airbus A380. BEN SMITHSON/THE POINTS GUY

Each seat in the business-class cabin will feature a touchscreen and seat-controlled inflight entertainment center for the 23-inch display, and passengers will have access to a small bar for midflight snacks and refreshments.

Meanwhile, the jets will also feature 24 premium economy seats — adding a cabin none of the carrier’s 777s currently offer. But Emirates’ premium economy cabin on the A380 has been highly regarded, winning at the TPG Awards in 2023.

Fleet overhaul timeline

Currently, Emirates flies premium economy cabins on its already-retrofitted A380s to several U.S. airports, including New York’s John F. Kennedy International Airport (JFK), Los Angeles International Airport (LAX), San Francisco International Airport (SFO) and Houston’s George Bush Intercontinental Airport (IAH).

The airline hopes to serve 36 cities globally with refurbished cabins (including the premium economy option) by February 2025, Emirates leaders say.

Along with upgrading the cabins on its 777s and A380s, Emirates’ fleet is getting another boost, with its first Airbus A350 expected to take flight in September, the company noted Monday.

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