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Jun 6, 2024

Most legroom in economy: Qatar, Emirates or Etihad

Sharon Petersen
Image: Boeing
Image: Boeing

There’s no denying the three big Middle Eastern carriers, Qatar Airways, Emirates and Etihad provide a superior onboard experience across all cabin classes. All three airlines have just won in the AirlineRatings Airline of The Year Awards 2024 but which one offers the most room in Economy?

Qatar Airways

Qatar Airways has quite a diverse fleet because it operates some smaller aircraft types on short range flights and with that comes a range of seat pitch.

The Qatar Airways A380 and A350 aircraft have a 31-32 inch seat pitch and the Boeing 777 aircraft varies from 31-33 inch. Their 787 Dreamliners have a 31 inch pitch and the A330, 32 inch. Seat width varies quite considerably from 16.9 inches up to 18.5.

The author has experienced both scenarios in Qatar and if you are lucky enough to get on an aircraft with the later seat pitch it does make for a comfortable flight.

A real bonus on the A380 in the airline’s economy section on the top deck which has a 2-4-2 configuration in a small private cabin.


Emirates currently operates a fleet of 777 and A380 aircraft.

The minimum seat pitch is 32 inch and the maximum 34. Seat width is fairly consistent at 17 inches on the 777 aircraft and 18 inches on the A380.


Etihad, like Qatar has a varied fleet and with that comes a mix of seat pitch and width. Its 787 Dreamliners have a 31-32 inch seat pitch and 17-inch width.

The Boeing 777 aircraft and A330 aircraft can vary from 31.5 inches up to 33. The width is consistent at 17.5 inches.

Etihad’s A380 aircraft also offers economy passengers a 17.5-inch seat width and 31-inch seat pitch.

We agree that there is no shining star, they are all very good and all offer excellent economy-class propositions.

To suit your needs it is best to consult one of the various seat map websites such as SeatGuru or for more up-to-date information the airline’s websites.

*Figures obtained from SeatGuru and airlines.

(Source: AirlinesRatings)