Key Points:

It's the little things about the world's biggest passenger plane that you tend to notice.

"There's just no noise at take-off, it's kind of eerie," said Roy Dowen, a well-seasoned British traveller.

"Flying on the A380 is almost like being on a bird itself.

"It's a fully luxurious experience, actually it's so quiet that you feel like you're shouting when you talk with your neighbours," said Mr Dowen, whose Concorde flight from Washington DC to London took three hours in 1973.

A crowd of about 500 gathered around the perimeter at Auckland International Airport for a glimpse of the Emirates superjet, which landed 17 minutes late after its near three-hour flight from Sydney yesterday.

But for some, the trip on the US$240 million ($477.5 million) plane on the world's shortest A380 route wasn't nearly long enough.

For Rangi Teaniani, a 24-year-old Kiwi Experience driver from Palmerston North, having a cold beer waiting for him at his seat after his five-minute shower in first class was "just awesome, mate".

"I normally travel cattle-class like everyone else," said Mr Teaniani, who paid $1900 last April to fly return business/first class to Sydney.

"I'm probably not going to get to do this again ... business class is great but there's no comparison to having a shower in first class."

Keeping Mr Teaniani's drinks topped up was Mt Albert native Troy Whittle who works as the A380's designated barman.

Mr Whittle, 29 and a five-year Emirates veteran who keeps books of cocktail recipes at the ready, had flown previously on the airline's 777s and A345-500s.

But he said it was a step up to the A380.

Working alongside Mr Whittle was Vivian Hale from Howick, one of the plane's "dedicated lounge assistants" and 26 cabin crew.

Part of her job description was to ensure the bar remained fully stocked and the snacks for the bar's 20 or so patrons in ready supply.

"For some reason this seems to be a popular part of the plane," she said.

"It is a good place for people to interact."

Emirates senior vice-president commercial operations, Richard Vaughan, said bringing the A380 to New Zealand was "a natural extension of the route" from Dubai to Sydney.

Emirates' A380 will fly out of Auckland three times a week before daily departures from May. "It will be a success," said Mr Vaughan.

"There will certainly be that initial curiosity but I think people will go out of their way to try and get on board."