Category Archives: Emirates Airline

Emirates announces its first passenger flights since suspension

Emirates has made this announcement:

  • Approvals obtained to fly passengers outbound from the UAE to some destinations from 06 April. Initial flights to commence from Dubai to London Heathrow, Frankfurt, Paris, Zurich and Brussels
  • Stringent entry restrictions remain in place at these destinations as well as others across the world; travellers advised to check before travel
  • Safety and wellbeing of customers and crew remain Emirates’ top priorities

Emirates has received approvals to carry passengers on certain flights. Effective Monday, April 6, 2020 initial flights will commence from Dubai to London Heathrow, Frankfurt, Paris, Brussels and Zurich, with 4 flights a week to London Heathrow, and 3 flights a week to the other cities.

Operating from Dubai International airport Terminal 2 until further notice, these flights will only carry outbound passengers from the UAE. Emirates will also carry belly-hold cargo in both directions, supporting trade and communities with the transport of essential goods.

HH Sheikh Ahmed bin Saeed Al Maktoum, Chairman and Chief Executive, Emirates airline and Group said: “These initial passenger services, although limited to travellers who meet the entry requirements set by the destination countries, will be welcomed by our customers seeking to return home to their countries and families. We would like to thank the UAE government and all our partners for their support in ensuring the smooth operation of our flights.

“While we hope to resume full operations as soon as possible, we acknowledge the challenges faced by many cities in dealing with the COVID-19 outbreak. Our network can only be restored with the easing of travel restrictions, and we maintain close contact with all authorities for latest updates. We are working closely with the authorities to resume our services, keeping in mind the safety and wellbeing of our crew and customers at every step of the journey. We continuously review the situation and will announce any additional services as they become available.”

Emirates will operate its Boeing 777-300ER aircraft on these routes, offering seats in Business and Economy class.

For health and safety reasons, Emirates will operate a modified inflight service programme on these flights. Magazines and other print reading material will not be available, and while food and beverages will continue to be offered on board, packaging and presentation will be modified to reduce contact during meal service Emirates’ Lounge and Chauffeur Drive services will be temporarily unavailable during this period.

All Emirates aircraft will go through enhanced cleaning and disinfection processes in Dubai, after each journey.

Emirates aircraft photo gallery:

Emirates SkyCargo calibrates cargo operations to better connect global markets

Emirates SkyCargo (Emirates Airline) Boeing 777-F1H A6-EFD (msn 35606) LAX (Michael B. Ing). Image: 949540.

Emirates has made this announcement:

On Monday, March 30, 2020, an Emirates SkyCargo flight carrying close to 500,000 COVID-19 testing kits landed at Sao Paulo Airport in Brazil. The kits were moved from Guangzhou via Dubai by the air cargo carrier on the first of two such flights operated to transport supplies to Sao Paulo. During the same week, Emirates also executed two special charters carrying almost 200 tonnes of medical supplies such as hand sanitisers and protective face masks from Hong Kong to Sydney while another flight transported pharmaceutical supplies to Karachi.

As part of a special charter operation, an Emirates Boeing 777 freighter transported close to 100 tonnes of relief material including hospital equipment to Milan and over 55 tons of highly temperature sensitive pharmaceuticals were flown to New York from Mumbai. Between March and April, the air cargo carrier will also be operating nine freighter flights to Budapest as part of a charter to transport supplies such as face masks and equipment to Hungary.

In addition to transporting critical medical supplies around the world, Emirates SkyCargo is also playing a vital role in bringing food materials into the UAE and the Middle East. During the last week of March, the carrier operated special flights from Pakistan and India to bring in more than 150 tonnes of perishables to Dubai. Dedicated cargo flights from Cairo and Nairobi have also been transporting perishables to Dubai and onwards to other destinations within the Middle East.

Operating within a rapidly changing global environment, Emirates SkyCargo has had to adapt and reinvent its operations and network to make sure that it can continue to facilitate not just transport of essential commodities but also support economies and help businesses around the world maintain continuity by keeping global supply chains up and running.

“In these trying times, we more than ever stand by our commitment for Emirates SkyCargo to act as a global conveyor belt for the transport of much needed commodities such as food and medicines and also for flying in equipment, machinery and other components which are vital for business continuity across essential industries,” said Nabil Sultan, Emirates Divisional Senior Vice President, Cargo. “As an extremely agile and customer-focused business, we have been able to establish a new network and schedule for our cargo operations within a very short period of time, utilising lower deck capacity on our widebody Boeing 777 passenger aircraft which supplement the cargo capacity we offer on our freighter aircraft.

“Additionally, in order to consolidate operations and reduce costs in this new scenario, we have also temporarily shifted all our cargo handling operations to Dubai International Airport (DXB). Taken together we are making sure that we react more quickly to requests coming in from every part of the globe from our customers,” Sultan added.

Dedicated cargo flights on passenger aircraft

Emirates SkyCargo has announced a new flight schedule for its global cargo operations which also includes cargo flights operated on its Boeing 777 passenger aircraft. These flights will offer around 40 tonnes of lower deck cargo capacity per flight and will supplement the cargo capacity being offered on Emirates’ fleet of freighter aircraft.

These cargo only flights are scheduled to operate to over 30 destinations across the Middle East, Africa, Asia, Europe and Australia with a majority of destinations being served with multiple weekly and daily flights. The schedules and destinations for the dedicated cargo flights on passenger aircraft have been planned keeping in mind optimal interconnectivity with Emirates’ scheduled freighter operations.

More details on Emirates SkyCargo’s scheduled operations can be found on the air cargo carrier’s website.

In addition to scheduled operations, Emirates SkyCargo will also operate charter and ad-hoc operations on Emirates aircraft based on market demand.

Consolidation of operations at Dubai International Airport

With effect from 1 April 2020, Emirates SkyCargo will consolidate all its cargo handling operations at Dubai International Airport, temporarily suspending operations at Emirates SkyCentral DWC, the terminal handling Emirates’ freighter aircraft. The move will help the air cargo carrier streamline cargo operations between its freighter flights and the new dedicated cargo flights being offered on Emirates’ passenger aircraft fleet.

Top Copyright Photo: Emirates SkyCargo (Emirates Airline) Boeing 777-F1H A6-EFD (msn 35606) LAX (Michael B. Ing). Image: 949540.

Emirates aircraft slide show:

Cargo Route Map:

Emirates ground crews give an emotional send-off to last passenger flights

Emirates made this announcement:

Emirates ground crews around the world have bid farewell to their last operating flights back to Dubai. EK 005 to London Heathrow, which departed at 1605hrs on March 24 was the last flight to take off from Dubai. EK 262 from Sao Paulo, which landed at 2235hrs (local time) was the last flight to arrive on March 25 into Dubai.

Emirates’ outstation airport teams from 39 stations including Prague, Newark, Seoul, London Stansted and Zurich devotedly sent of their last passenger flights before the suspension took effect. Over the next weeks Emirates’ operational teams will focus on preparing for service resumption.

As per UAE government directives to protect communities against the spread of COVID-19, Emirates has temporarily suspended all passenger flights from March 25, 2020. The airline will resume passenger services as soon as it is possible to do so.

In the meantime, Emirates is still busy deploying its fleet of Boeing 777 freighters, bolstering international air cargo links for the transport of vital goods, including medical supplies and food, around the world.

All photos by the airline.

Emirates suspends most passenger operations due to the coronavirus

Emirates has made this announcement:

  • Emirates retains cargo operations, but temporarily suspends most passenger operations by March 25
  • dnata significantly reduces operations, including temporary closure of operations at some international locations where demand is low
  • Group implements basic salary reduction for majority of employees for three months, will not cut jobs
  • Supports government measures to safeguard community health

Since the COVID-19 outbreak began, Emirates and dnata have been adapting operations in line with regulatory directives as well as travel demand.

The airline has aimed to maintain passenger flights for as long as feasible to help travellers return home amidst an increasing number of travel bans, restrictions, and country lockdowns across the world. It continues to maintain vital international air cargo links for economies and communities, deploying its fleet of 777 freighters for the transport of essential goods including medical supplies across the world.

With many of its airline customers dramatically reducing flights or ceasing services altogether, dnata has also significantly reduced its operations, including temporarily shutting some offices across its international network.

HH Sheikh Ahmed bin Saeed Al Maktoum, Chairman and Chief Executive of Emirates Group said: “The world has literally gone into quarantine due to the COVID-19 outbreak. This is an unprecedented crisis situation in terms of breadth and scale: geographically, as well as from a health, social, and economic standpoint. Until January 2020, the Emirates Group was doing well against our current financial year targets. But COVID-19 has brought all that to a sudden and painful halt over the past 6 weeks.

“As a global network airline, we find ourselves in a situation where we cannot viably operate passenger services until countries re-open their borders, and travel confidence returns. By Wednesday March 25, although we will still operate cargo flights which remain busy, Emirates will have temporarily suspended most of its passenger operations. We continue to watch the situation closely, and as soon as things allow, we will reinstate our services.”

Having received requests from governments and customers to support the repatriation of travellers, Emirates will continue to operate passenger and cargo flights to the following countries and territories until further notice, as long as borders remain open, and there is demand: the UK, Switzerland, Hong Kong, Thailand, Malaysia, Philippines, Japan, Singapore, South Korea, Australia, South Africa, USA, and Canada. The situation remains dynamic, and travellers can check flight status on emirates.com.

Sheikh Ahmed added: “Emirates Group has a strong balance sheet, and substantial cash liquidity, and we can, and will, with appropriate and timely action, survive through a prolonged period of reduced flight schedules, so that we are adequately prepared for the return to normality.”

Cost reduction measures

The Emirates Group has undertaken a series of measures to contain costs, as the outlook for travel demand remains weak across markets in the short to medium term. This includes:

  • Postponing or cancelling discretionary expenditure
  • A freeze on all non-essential recruitment and consultancy work
  • Working with suppliers to find cost savings and efficiency
  • Encouraging employees to take paid or unpaid leave in light of reduced flying capacity
  • A temporary reduction of basic salary for the majority of Emirates Group employees for three months, ranging from 25% to 50%. Employees will continue to be paid their other allowances during this time. Junior level employees will be exempt from basic salary reduction
  • Presidents of Emirates and dnata – Sir Tim Clark and Gary Chapman – will take a 100% basic salary cut for three months

On the decision to reduce basic salary, Sheikh Ahmed said: “Rather than ask employees to leave the business, we chose to implement a temporary basic salary cut as we want to protect our workforce and keep our talented and skilled people, as much as possible. We want to avoid cutting jobs. When demand picks up again, we also want to be able to quickly ramp up and resume services for our customers.”

The Emirates Group has strong liquidity, with a healthy cash position but it is prudent that it take steps to reduce costs at this time. Emirates remains committed to serving its markets and looks forward to resuming a normal flight schedule as soon as that is permitted by the relevant authorities.

Safeguarding customers, employees, and communities

Emirates Group closely monitors the situation and keeps in regular contact with all relevant authorities, so that it can implement the latest guidance to keep travellers and its employees safe and healthy.

The company has strongly discouraged its employees from non-essential travel, implemented work from home policies for all employees where operationally feasible, enhanced cleaning and disinfection protocols at its facilities, introduced temperature screening at its key office entry points, and launched internal educational campaigns on hand hygiene and health practices to reduce risk of COVID-19.

Over the past weeks, the airline has also implemented enhanced cleaning and disinfecting measures on all of its aircraft departing Dubai as a precaution, and worked closely with airports to implement screening measures as required by the local authorities.

Frontline employees such as crew and airport teams have also been provided with support to stay safe while on duty, including providing hand sanitizers and masks where required.

The Emirates Group fully supports all initiatives to safeguard the health of communities in every market where it operates, including the UAE’s national COVID-19 response.

Sheikh Ahmed said: “These are unprecedented times for the airline and travel industry, but we will get through it. Our business is taking a hit, but what matters in the long run is that we do the right thing for our customers, our employees, and the communities we serve. With the support and unity that we have seen from our employees, partners, customers, and other stakeholders, I’m confident that Emirates can tackle this challenge and come out stronger.”

Emirates aircraft photo gallery:

Emirates to operate chartered flights to Moscow

Emirates made this announcement:

Due to the temporary suspension of air services between Russia and UAE, Emirates will temporarily suspend its operations to Russia starting from March 20 until further notice.

To facilitate the return of travelers whose journeys were disrupted, Emirates will operate selected charter flights to Moscow and St. Petersburg between March 20 and March 29, 2020. Only Russian nationals will be allowed to travel on these special flights from Dubai to Moscow and St. Petersburg and the return Emirates flights will only be open to non-Russian nationals.

Please see below the flight schedules. All timings are local.

Applicable to 20 – 29 March 2020 only:

  • Dubai to Moscow: EK133 departs at 9:15hrs and arrives at 13:45hrs.
  • Moscow to Dubai: EK134 departs at 17:00hrs and arrives at 23:15hrs.

Applicable to 20 March 2020 only:

  • Dubai to Moscow: EK 131 departs at 16:15hrs and arrives at 20:40hrs.
  • Moscow to Dubai: EK 132 departs at 23:50hrs and arrives at 6:15hrs.

Applicable to 20 – 25 March and 27 – 29 March 2020, only:

  • Dubai to St. Petersburg: EK 175 departs at 15:30hrs and arrives at 20:45hrs.
  • St. Petersburg to Dubai: EK 176 departs at 23:25hrs and arrives at 6:35hrs.

Travellers may contact their travel agents or local Emirates office to book these flights.

Emirates to implement thermal screening on all US bound flights

Emirates will be implementing thermal screening measures for all passengers travelling on US flights departing from Dubai International Airport, effective tonight, 12 March 2020. Thermal scanners will be placed at departure gates for all US gateways, starting with EK 231 to Washington Dulles International Airport. If a passenger is found to have a higher than normal temperature, they will undergo further testing. This is in addition to the thermal screenings done for all passengers on arrival as they pass through customs.

In addition, Emirates has suspended its flights between Dubai and Italy starting from today, with the final flight operating on March 15. The airline is working with the relevant authorities to monitor the developments closely as the COVID-19 situation evolves.

The measures are being taken as part of the airline’s overall response to the latest developments around the COVID-19 pandemic. Emirates has been coordinating efforts in conjunction with local health and regulatory authorities, including the Dubai Health Authority, so that the airline meets or exceeds local and international guidelines and directives around COVID-19. Emirates plans to gradually roll out thermal screening procedures for all of its flights departing Dubai to ensure the health and safety of its customers travelling abroad.

Passengers are advised to observe the general recommended time of arrival at the airport, which is 3 hours ahead of departure, to ensure seamless check-in procedures and to complete their immigration formalities.

In addition to thermal screening procedures at the airport, Emirates has also implemented proactive and voluntary measures to ensure a safe flying experience with enhanced cleaning and complete disinfection protocols in over 248 aircraft departing Dubai each day. The airline utilises high-grade cleaning chemicals proven to kill viruses and germs, leaving a long-lasting protective coating against viruses, bacteria and fungi on surfaces. The comprehensive cleaning process includes a thorough wiping down all cabin surfaces, in addition to other normal procedures such as changing head rest covers on all seats, replacement of reading materials, vacuuming, amongst other cleaning activities.

On any aircraft found to have transported a suspected or confirmed COVID-19 case, Emirates implements further deep cleaning including the defogging of cabin interiors and misting with disinfectant across all soft furnishings, and replacement of seat covers and cushions in the affected area. The aircraft’s state-of-the-art air circulation system, utilising HEPA cabin air filters, will also be replaced.

The airline has also offering passengers additional peace of mind with the ability to change their travel dates without change and reissuance fees on any bookings made prior to March 31, 2020. Cancellation and refund fees will also be waived for bookings made between March 7 and March 31, 2020, regardless of travel date.

Emirates aircraft photo gallery:

Emirates to deep clean and disinfect any suspected coronavirus aircraft that takes between six to eight hours

Emirates has made this announcement:

In response to the latest developments in the COVID-19 outbreak around the world, Emirates is taking extra steps that go above and beyond industry and regulatory requirements to ensure its customers’ health and comfort, and provide them with confidence and peace of mind when planning their travel.

Enhanced cleaning and disinfection

On all aircraft departing from its hub in Dubai, Emirates has implemented enhanced cleaning and complete disinfection of all cabins as a precaution. In line with the latest expert medical finding that the COVID-19 virus is primarily transmitted by touch, Emirates has placed its greatest focus on surface cleaning.

The airline uses an approved chemical that is proven to kill viruses and germs, leaves a long-lasting protective coating against new contamination of viruses, bacteria and fungi on surfaces, and is eco-friendly.

The cleaning process includes a comprehensive wipe down of all surfaces – from windows, tray tables, seatback screens, armrests, seats, in-seat controls, panels, air vents and overhead lockers in the cabin, to lavatories, galleys and crew rest areas. All of this is done in addition to other normal procedures such as changing head rest covers on all seats, replacement of reading materials, vacuuming, and more.

To complete this thorough cleaning process within an hour while the aircraft is preparing for its next mission, requires a team of 18 trained cleaners on a Boeing 777, and a team of 36 for an A380. In a 24-hour period on an average day, some 248 aircraft go through this process.

On any aircraft that were found to have transported a suspected or confirmed COVID-19 case, Emirates would go even further, and implement deep cleaning and disinfection in a process that takes between six to eight hours to complete. This includes the defogging of cabin interiors and misting with disinfectant across all soft furnishings, and replacement of seat covers and cushions in the affected area. The aircraft’s HEPA cabin air filters will also be replaced.

All of Emirates’ aircraft are fitted with HEPA cabin air filters which are proven to filter out 99.97% of viruses. They also remove dust, allergens and microbes from the air recirculated into the cabin and cockpit, which helps to provide a safer, healthier and more comfortable environment for the passengers and crew.

Peace of mind on travel plans

Emirates is also providing customers across its network added flexibility, choice, and value; with the ability to change their travel dates without change and reissuance fees. This waiver policy applies to all booked tickets issued on or from 7 March until 31 March 2020. Visit emirates.com for more details on the waiver.

Helping loyal flyers retain tier status

Recognising that some of its members will be impacted by travel restrictions and flight reductions, Emirates Skywards is providing its Platinum, Gold and Silver members the ability to maintain their current status by fulfilling 80% of their tier travel requirements between 31 March and 30 June 2020. In addition, Skywards members booked to travel between 1 March and 30 June 2020 will be able to benefit from an additional 20% bonus Tier Miles.

Monitoring and response protocols

The safety and well-being of customers and employees is a topmost priority at Emirates. Since January, the airline has activated its contingency response team to monitor daily developments on the COVID-19 outbreak, maintain contact with all relevant health and regulatory authorities, and ensure the airline’s response is current and appropriate.

Emirates continues to work closely with all its partners and industry stakeholders, to ensure travellers can continue their journeys with the assurance that their wellbeing and comfort remains at the forefront.

Valerie Tan

Emirates Public Relations