Emirates, one of the Middle East’s giant airlines has announced that it will resume flying Airbus SE A380 superjumbos to London and Paris. The move comes as the airline seeks to ramp up its capacity and dominate as the biggest long-haul airline globally.
The flights will resume on July 15 with more destinations to follow later as the company said in a tweet:
“A380 will return to the skies with flights to London Heathrow and Paris starting from 15 July.”
Emirates connects Dubai to 40 cities around the world. It said on June 22 that it is seeing a positive trend of air traffic surging across its network. The company is adding more destinations as Dubai gradually eases travel restrictions. Since the pandemic struck, the airline grounded its passenger fleet and cut thousands of jobs as it deals with the current economic fallout.
The new travel measures and social distancing may have compelled the company to reactivate its giants of the skies. Today, Emirates is operating all of its passenger flights on the Boeing 777. The first flights of the A380 will be to London Heathrow and Paris Charles de Gaulle according to Luchvaartnieuws. From August 1, Schiphol in Amsterdam will be included in the timetable.
The news of the resumption of the A380s comes as Dubai now opens its door again to tourists. Beginning July 7, Dubai will let Schiphol in Amsterdam come in for the first time since March. However, there will be many be strict rules put in place for those wishing to visit.
Emirates Endorses A380
Emirates Airlines has always supported and stood by its decision to manage and operate the A380. In this sector, other airlines have struggled to make profits. Its excellent Dubai hub and large network put Emirates perfectly in place to haul many people from east to west and everywhere else. That regional location gives it the demand necessary to make the A380 fly profitably.
As the COVID-19 pandemic continues to bite on economies, the A380 was the first casualty and it was grounded. Operators sent the superjumbo to bed with most of them unlikely to return to the skies.
Many concerns followed that Emirates would shun the aircraft as well with the CEO Tim Clark even saying that the type was ‘over’ already. The airline has reportedly been in talks with Airbus seeking not to take the full remainder of A380s remaining to be delivered. Emirates expects a slow return of previous travel demands.
Nonetheless, the fears were vanquished in May when CEO Clark said that none of the planes were planned for early retirement. He commented:
“[The A380 has a] place in the Emirates international network on the scale it has before. Albeit not today or fully next year, but the year after, I think there will be a place for it, and I think it is going to be extremely popular.”
Ready To Fly
In the entire crisis, Emirates had kept its A380s ticking over. During an Aviation Week interview, Clark said that the fleet was being maintained active and ready for a swift return. He stated:
“[The A380s] are on a monthly maintenance schedule, which means they are flown every month, so every single one of the aircraft flies. Pilots keep current on recency … with these aircraft.”
Ensuring that the aircraft and their pilots are kept ticking over in this manner will be essential for a swift reactivation. Mothballing planes for a long time is expensive and reversing it also takes a lot of time. Thus, it appears like Emirates has made an excellent decision. That decision will enable the airline to bring the A380 back into the skies rapidly.