I think it’s fair to say that many people are exhausted and just want to get away. While flying (and/or “escaping” to another country) during a pandemic can be a hot and controversial topic, airlines are willing to meet the demand, specifically Emirates.
EMIRATES ADDS FOUR A380s
This morning Emirates announced they were expanding their A380 deployment and adding services to UK and Russia “to meet travel demand.”
I found this announcement interesting for two reasons:
- they are using an A380 (are there no 777s sitting around ready to be flown?)
- they used the word “demand.”
Historically, Emirates has operated the world’s largest Airbus A380 and Boeing 777 fleets and has ordered nearly as many A380s as all other airlines combined.
However, as Emirates has resumed operations, the focus has primarily been on flying 777s, rather than A380s. This shouldn’t be surprising given that it takes A LOT of passengers to fill an A380 and that’s way more capacity than is needed right now.
Additionally, you may recall that the UK has been experiencing a large uptick in COVID-19 cases so the country banned all leisure travel between November 5 and December 2 to counter the trend.
So how much demand could warrant an A380? Apparently a lot of demand as Emirates has added 4 daily A380’s worth! Here is the schedule:
|EK7||A380||London (LHR)||Dubai (DXB)||3:10 AM||7:10 AM|
|EK1||A380||London (LHR)||Dubai (DXB)||7:45 AM||11:40 AM|
|EK29||A380||London (LHR)||Dubai (DXB)||9:40 AM||1:50 PM|
|EK3||A380||London (LHR)||Dubai (DXB)||2:30 PM||6:20 PM|
|EK8||A380||Dubai (DXB)||London (LHR)||9:10AM||8:00 PM|
|EK2||A380||Dubai (DXB)||London (LHR)||1:40PM||12:40 AM (+1)|
|EK30||A380||Dubai (DXB)||London (LHR)||5:50PM||4:40 AM (+1)|
|EK4||A380||Dubai (DXB)||London (LHR)||8:20PM||7:20 AM (+1)|
Emirates will boost A380 service on its London Heathrow (LHR) route starting November 27, just before the lockdown is lifted.
I think it’s worth noting that the Dubai-based airline has also increased service to:
- Manchester (6x per week – begins December 2)
- Birmingham (begins November 27)
- Glasgow (begins December 1)
…so I don’t think this decision is a one-off but rather Brits searching for some quarantine-free winter sun.
IS THIS A DISASTER IN THE MAKING?
Emirates recently reopened its iconic onboard bar and lounge, as well as the First Class shower spa on its A380’s.
Additionally, the UK eased quarantine restrictions on travelers arriving from several “low risk” countries – including the United Arab Emirates (UAE) – given the extremely low COVID19 cases they’ve experienced.
The decision has essentially created a so-called travel corridor allowing passengers to enter the United Kingdom from Dubai without needing to self-isolate for 14-days.
But with Dubai airport launching completely contactless travel and looking like this…
…and the UK doing the exact opposite. Is the UAE asking for trouble?
Emirates has added 4 daily A380’s worth of capacity to London due to demand.
I’m really interested to see how this plays out as it is scheduled to begin this coming week.
For travelers located located in the UK and interested in traveling to Dubai, you must obtain a negative PCR test certificate within 96 hours of travel.
What do you think about this announcement? Do you want to go to Dubai?
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