Video Of Inaugural Etihad Airways Plane Landing At LAX

On Sunday I took the inaugural Etihad Airways flight from Abu Dhabi to Los Angeles, which was a pretty cool experience.

I was a bit surprised by the lack of festivities/buzz about the new route at Abu Dhabi Airport, though the opposite couldn’t have been more true at LAX.

Since this was the first time Etihad Airways flew to Los Angeles, quite a few people came out to see the plane land (after all, there’s not a much better airport for spotting than LAX, thanks to the In-N-Out located right under the approach path).


I love Etihad Airways’ livery. If a royal family had a private plane (okay, I guess that’s not really an “if”), I’d imagine it would be painted just like Etihad’s livery. So I imagine the plane even looks intriguing to people that have no clue what it is.

Anyway, a few of the spotters on the ground have shared some cool videos and pictures of the inaugural flight landing at LAX, which I figured I’d post. It’s cool to experience an inaugural flight from onboard a plane, but equally cool to see pictures and videos from the outside of a plane you were on.

Thanks to SpeedbirdHD for sending me a link to the video they took of the flight landing at LAX — it captures just how smooth the landing was (though it sure felt like we flared a long time):

If you look really closely you should be able to see me waving from the second set of windows on the left side of the plane. Okay, maybe not. šŸ˜‰


Thanks also to Nerdbird SD for sending me the below pictures of the plane pulling into the gate. There wasn’t a water cannon salute due to the drought in California, though as we taxied into the gate the pilots held out US and UAE flags from the cockpit windows. Having been on the plane, that’s not something I could capture. šŸ˜‰




Fun times, and I can’t wait for my next inaugural flight, which will be coming up soon!

Filed Under: Etihad, Videos
  1. Doesn’t LAX usually have several active runways going simultaneously? How did the spotters know where to be to get the shots of the approach?

  2. @ john — They do have two runways for landing, usually (while the other two are used for takeoff). That being said, they know in advance which runway a flight is scheduled to land on, so I suspect they positioned themselves accordingly.

  3. Definitely not an IF. They have fleets of planes.

    Sadly, neither the VIP and VVIP aircraft operated by Dubai Royal Air Wing nor Abu Dhabi Amiri Flight have impressive liveries.

    Qatar Amiri Flight is also not impressive.

    Best one of the bunch is Saudi Royal Flight.

  4. not really etihad related… since the cockpit windows open, are they locked and cannot be opened during flight? i hope so

  5. @ mangoceviche — Much like the emergency exits, I would suspect that due to the pressure at altitude they couldn’t open.

  6. Ok, among etihad emirates and Qatar, which is your preferred first class for ultralonghaul flights from Middle East to US?

  7. @ Francisco C — Since Qatar doesn’t offer a first class product to the US, I’d say Etihad.

  8. Don’t fly Etihad’s AUH-LAX Route if you are connecting from Pakistan or India within 3.5 to 4 hour window. They have history of “Creating” delays on days when they overbook AUH-LAX. (AUH-LAX leaves at 850, your flight from Pak or India which was supposed to get to AUH at 6am will get there at 8 and you won’t have enough time to go through on-premises immigration.

    Then they will get you into east coast to Washington at 11am Gulf time flight and put you on grey hound American or United domestic flight for 6 hours.. Pay a little extra and Fly Emirates DUBAI-LAX and save time, emirates is much better with timing.

  9. @ Syed – this is very interesting; are there threads on FT or some other forum that talk about that?

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