Etihad's new sustainable dining service ditches single-use plastic

The reusable products were revealed at Arabian Travel Market and will be rolled out on economy cabins before the end of the year

Etihad's new economy dining service is entirely plastic-free and completely reusable. Photo: Etihad
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Travellers flying with Etihad Airways will be able to travel a little lighter this year as the airline is introducing new sustainability-focused economy-class products.

Featuring dining equipment that is entirely single-use plastic free, recycled blankets and locally produced products, the new economy class offering is part of the airline’s commitment to removing 80 per cent of single-use plastic from operations by the end of 2022.

The sleek black dining equipment includes trays, dishes and lids, all of which are reusable and allow the airline to reduce waste from its in-flight dining services.

The recyclable products are not disposable, and at the end of their life cycle will be collected, washed, ground and reused to make replacement products.

Economy passengers will also be given stainless steel cutlery during meal services to further cut down on single-use plastic. Etihad will use locally produced items where possible to help further reduce the impact of its operations.

And passengers at the back of the plane will also be able to enjoy more comfort, thanks to new pillows that are 35 per cent larger with a 200-thread count and locally made covers, and soft blankets made out of recycled plastic.

“Following extensive research and development through our eco-flights over the past few years, we’re proud to reveal the first in a series of enhancements to our in-flight experience,” said Terry Daly, executive director guest experience, brand and marketing at Etihad.

“Our commitment to sustainability doesn’t come at a compromise to the quality and thoughtfulness behind Etihad’s guest experience, and these innovative new products will further improve our offering. We look forward to rolling out this new experience across the fleet towards the latter part of the year.”

The new dining products were on display at the opening day of the Arabian Travel Market, a trade event for the travel and tourism industry that takes place until May 12 in Dubai.

During the presentation, Daly confirmed that the upgraded products would not affect ticket prices for travellers in any way.

Also on display at the event is Etihad’s new Business Class cabin with all-aisle seating, sliding privacy doors and wireless charging docks.

It was first showcased on Etihad’s new A350-1000 jet, which entered service in March and is the first of five of the aircraft joining the national airline of the UAE this year.

Updated: May 09, 2022, 2:57 PM