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Etihad vs British Airways

We compare Etihad and British Airways flights to help you find your ideal airline.

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If you’re struggling to choose between British Airways and Etihad for your next holiday or business trip, we have a solution.

Check out how each airline stacks up in every category from in-flight entertainment to baggage allowances with our in-depth comparison.

We also searched for identical flights with both airlines to see which offered the cheapest fare. You’ll be booking your flights in no time.

Etihad vs British Airways

FeatureEtihadBritish AirwaysVerdict
Where can you fly to?
  • Africa
  • Asia
  • Australia and New Zealand
  • Middle East
  • Europe
  • North America
  • Africa
  • Asia
  • Australia and New Zealand
  • Middle East
  • Europe
  • North America
  • South America
  • Caribbean
Both service a wide range of areas.
What is the star rating by Skytrax?5-star4-starEtihad has a higher star rating.
What classes are available?Economy, business and firstEconomy, premium economy, business and firstBritish Airways offers more classes.
What is the baggage allowance?Checked luggage Economy (deal): 30kg

Economy (flex): 35kg

Business: 40kg

First: 50kg

Multiple bags can be checked in for each class, however no one piece of luggage can exceed 32kg.


Economy: 1 bag up to 7kg

Business and first:

2 bags up to 12kg in total. Limits vary by location.

Checked luggage

Economy: 23kg Premium economy: 2 bags up to 23kg each

Business and first: 2 bags up to 32kg each


All classes include 1 handbag or laptop bag and 1 carry-on bag, both up to 23kg

British Airways has a greater baggage allowance in premium economy, and business.
Where can you fly from in Australia?Brisbane, Sydney, Melbourne, Perth14 Australian locations, including most major cities.British Airways offers more locations to fly from in Australia.
What is the in-flight entertainment like?Etihad’s E-BOX in-flight entertainment system includes movies, TV shows, music and games, and live TV on selected flights.British Airways offers movies, TV shows, podcasts, music, games and dedicated kids entertainment.Both have excellent in-flight entertainment.
Can I make changes or cancellations?Yes. Cancellations, refunds and changes can be made online, subject to fees and depending on your ticket type.Yes. You can change, upgrade, cancel and obtain a refund for your flight online. Fees may apply.Both airlines allow cancellations and changes.
What type of plane will I fly on? Is there an A380?Etihad uses Airbus and Boeing aircraft, including the A380.British Airways has a range of Boeing and Airbus planes, including the A380.Both airlines’ range of aircraft include the Airbus A380.
Which frequent flyer program is it a member of?Etihad Guest allows frequent flyers to earn miles by flying with Etihad and fThe British Airways Executive Club allows members to earnAviostravel reward points on British Airways and Oneworld partner flights.British Airways is part of an alliance, Etihad is not.
Is there Wi-Fi?Yes, on most aircraft. Onboard Wi-Fi plans are available.Wi-Fi is being rolled out and is expected to be available on 90% of aircraft by 2019.Etihad has Wi-Fi on most of its aircraft.
Can I price match?YesYesYou can price match with both airlines.
Is alcohol available?YesYesBoth airlines serve alcohol.
Is there online chat?NoNoNeither airline has online chat.
Is there a charge for infants?Yes. The infant fare is 10% of the adult fare, provided they sit on an adult’s lap.Yes. Infants sitting on an adult’s lap pay 10% of the adult fare.Both airlines charge for infants.
Does it carry pets?Yes. Pets can travel as cargo. Guide dogs travel free of charge as checked luggage.Yes. Assistance dogs travel free in the cabin, while other pets must travel in the hold.Etihad and British Airways both allow pets to be flown.
What are the payment options?
  • Credit card
  • Debit card
  • Bank transfer
  • eWallet
  • Offline payment
  • Credit card
  • Debit card
  • Charge card
  • PayPal
Etihad offers a wider range of payment methods.
Can I book round-the-world fares?YesYesEtihad and British Airways both offer round-the-world fares.
Can I book multi-city fares?YesYesBoth airlines offer multi-city fares.
Are there any features offered to find the best price?Etihad has a best-deals page.British Airways’ Low Fare Finder helps you locate the cheapest flight around your travel dates.British Airways has better tools to search for cheap flights.

Are these good airlines to fly with?

British Airways and Etihad are both rated on Skytrax, with 3 stars in every category. However, Skytrax considers Etihad a 5-star airline, making it one of just 10 airlines to receive this accolade. Etihad's first class scores 5 stars while economy scores 4 stars.

British Airways is a 4-star airline according to Skytrax, with ratings between 3 and 4 stars for all flight categories.

The verdict?

Based on customer reviews and ratings, both airlines are a good choice. with Etihad offering a more premium experience due to its higher star rating.

Are there any other differences worth noting?

As well as its three regular fare classes, Etihad offers The Residence on A380 flights. This three-room suite includes a living room, bathroom and bedroom designed for two people travelling together.

When you book The Residence you receive a VIP concierge service that includes a luxury chauffeur, private lounge and an onboard butler trained at the Savoy hotel in London.

The verdict

British Airways offers more tools to help you uncover the best deals as well as a greater variety of special offers spanning more locations.

Which offers the best price?

Etihad’s Price Promise means you will be refunded the difference if you find the same fare for at least US$20 cheaper in economy, or at least US$40 cheaper in business or first class, on another website.

British Airways’ Best Price Guarantee will price match if you find the same flight cheaper elsewhere online, whatever the price difference.

Whichever airline you choose, you’re guaranteed the lowest fare by booking directly through its website.

The verdict

We made the same flight booking with Etihad and British Airways and found that British Airways beat Etihad out by around $300 return. This may come down to different sale pricing at the time as well as London being British Airways' home country (in this comparison circumstance) and prices may tip in Etihad's favour for destinations it services better than British Airways.

What sort of deals are available?

Etihad offers deals to destinations across Europe, Australia and the Middle East. Recent deals have included Perth to New York for $1,170, Sydney to London for $1,266 and Melbourne to Athens for $1,194.

British Airways has special offers covering a large portion of its destinations, from Asia and the Caribbean to Europe and The States. It also features a Holiday Finder and Low Fare Finder to help you scout out the best prices.

Recent deals have included return flights from Sydney to London for $1,199 return, Sydney to Singapore flights for $649 return and flights to Rome plus six nights’ accommodation for $1,499 return.

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