Emirates' Heathrow flights to become All-A380 early next year
Emirates' five daily flights to London Heathrow will all be served by A380s by 1st February next year, firmly establishing the airline as the principal double decker operator into the British capital.
Combined with the daily Manchester A380 service, this will mean the world’s largest A380 carrier will be sending 42 A380 flights to the UK each week, by far its biggest A380 market.
Emirates has steadily grown its London A380 operations since first deploying the aircraft on a scheduled service to Heathrow in December 2008, the year the airline started to receive deliveries of the world’s largest passenger jet aircraft.
“Due to high customer demand for the A380 product, soon, travellers to and from London Heathrow will be able to enjoy our flagship aircraft on every flight,” said Salem Obaidalla, Emirates’ Senior Vice President, Commercial Operations, Europe & Russian Federation. “Our customers will also have a greater chance of an all-A380 experience when travelling across our network between London, Dubai and places such as Bangkok, Beijing, Tokyo, Sydney, and from 1st October, Melbourne.”
The Emirates’ A380, known for its quietness and fuel efficiency, takes airline travel to a higher plane. On the upper deck, there are 14 flat-bed First Class Private Suites with electrically operated doors and 76 fully-flat mini-pods in Business Class. Downstairs, depending on the configuration, there are 399 or 427 comfortable contoured seats in Economy Class, spread across four separate cabins.
The in-flight ice system offers more than 1,200 channels of entertainment across all cabin classes, and to enhance the enjoyment of a movie, your favourite music or on-demand game, cabin crew from across the world will serve delicious gourmet chef prepared food.
A personal satellite phone is fitted to each seat, which also carries a seat-back sms and email service, along with seat to seat calling and a "My USB" personal picture viewing facility. If customers want to be connected 24/7, they now have Wi-Fi access on all A380s in the fleet.
The 5th A380 service, from 1st February 2013, applies to EK 029 and EK 030. EK 029 leaves Dubai daily at 0940hrs and arrives in London Heathrow at 1330hrs. EK 030 departs London Heathrow at 1635hrs and lands in Dubai at 0325hrs the next day. EK 007 and the return EK 008 becomes a daily A380 service from 28th October 2012.
Emirates, one of the world’s fastest growing airlines and cruising on its new “Hello Tomorrow” brand platform, flies to 124 destinations in 73 countries. Next year, Emirates’ exclusive Terminal 3 in Dubai will receive a new pioneering neighbour, the world’s first dedicated A380 concourse.
Analyst Saj Ahmad commented: "Heathrow remains by far and away the most lucrative destination for Emirates and given the constraints at the airport, it makes sense that Emirates is capitalising on making the most of its slot allocation there by making all of its flights A380s to the UK capital.
“With no clear direction about whether London will get extra capacity, Emirates decision has effectively been made for it, in that they cannot wait to lose customers to rival airlines, so they are not just swapping airplanes, but upping capacity in order to protect its market share.
Ahmad added: “It's also likely that the airline will add more A380s to the UK, especially Manchester, where demand is as robust as it is at Heathrow. People who questioned Emirates decision to order so many A380s will now see that the airline is making excellent use of the airplane on major routes - and as the airline broadens its route network, many more congested destinations will also likely see 777-300ER services complemented with A380s."