Emirates Airlines is planning the return of the A380 doubledecker flights whose service was stopped some years before because of the lack of passengers during the covid-19 phase. This would enable the airlines to operate at full capacity from the end of next year.
Emirates Airlines is the largest buyer of A380 planes owning around 120 of them. More than seventy of them are currently operational after a general overhaul and especially in the interiors with updated premium economy seating.
The A380 is a key tool for Dubai-based operations
This is a preferred seating choice among customers as it provides more comfort and space than the normal economy seats.
Other competing airlines like Lufthansa, Etihad, etc. have also revived their A380s but not up to the capacity of the Emirates. Emirates is known for its collection of superjumbo flights like the A380 and Boeing Co.777 widebody.
They are also the world’s largest international airline with a collection of double-decker flights and other normal flights. Out of the total A380 owned by Emirates, eighty-five of them are currently in service. Among the remaining, some of them are going for retrofitting as the airline is spending almost $2 billion for the purpose.
One of the legendary features of the superjumbo flight is its shower spa which is available to first-class customers. They get to have a complete shower at thirty-five thousand feet and Emirates is the only airline to offer this luxury feature which was specifically designed by Airbus.
Tim Clark, the president of Emirates Airlines says that the A380 flights are always a class apart and they had their long legendary run in the airline business. Being one of the major customers of the A380 and owning half of the totally manufactured flights, Clark has a very emotional connection with the A380s.
As part of the future roadmap of Emirates airlines, the company is planning to buy a twin-aisle Airbus A350 in August 2024. The airline is expecting a steady growth of about ten years starting from 2024 and with the arrival of the new batches of A350s.
An order of fifty aircraft is due in the span of the coming three and a half years and there is a plan to get the Boeing 777X too. Also, they are planning to recruit around four hundred pilots and six thousand cabin crew by next year. This will be a major addition to the existing 4,500 pilots and 17,500 cabin crew members.
Emirates Airlines also signed a codeshare agreement with United Airlines this September. According to this, the Emirates airline is ending its previous codeshare partnership with United Airline rival JetBlue Airways and starting a new agreement with United Airline that will allow both companies to sell seats on each other’s airplanes.
Although in the past, United Airlines was a rival to the Dubai airline giant and made numerous lobbying attempts to thwart their expansion to nations like the US, now the tables have turned. JetBlue will be joining hands with Abu Dhabi-based Etihad Airlines for a partnership expansion and Qatar Airways will sign a codeshare arrangement with American Airlines.
Clark and his company are planning to give the A380s a final run till mid-2030 and after that, they are planning to discontinue its service. He hopes for a newly redesigned version of the A380 which uses lighter materials and the use of more efficient engines which can create a more sustainable aircraft.
One of the major drawbacks of the A380 is its four-engine structure which consumes more fuel and is less efficient. If another A380 variant has to be successful, then it should address these issues and bring a completely renovated product into the market.