Cabin Enablers

The redesigned forward stairs in the A380 are designed to create space for 20 more passengers.

Airbus is now offering several new cabin configuration options for its A380, which it calls Cabin Enablers, to boost the super jumbo’s appeal. The most notable change is the relocation of the forward stairs connecting the lower and top decks, which Airbus says will create space for 20 extra seats in economy, premium and business classes.

The other enablers are an 11-abreast economy class on the main deck, which will add 23 seats, a nine-abreast premium economy layout (11 seats), a redesigned rear staircase (a straight/square arrangement from the current spiral design) and aft galley (14 seats) and the removal of sidewall stowage on the upper deck (ten seats).

If a customer opted for all these changes, the A380’s seat count would increase by 78 seats from a standard 497 in four classes up to 575. Orders for the A380 have plateaued in recent years and more than half of the commitments are for Emirates, the type’s main operator, so Airbus is clearly trying to boost the aircraft’s appeal by generating more revenue-earning opportunities in the aircraft’s layout.