Emirates says it will become the first scheduled commercial airline to operate an Airbus A380 flight into Egypt when it flies its flagship aircraft to Cairo on 2nd October. The flight is currently a one-off but the Dubai-based airline is hoping to make the A380 a permanent fixture on its DXB-CAI route.
Emirates flight EK927 and EK928 will act as a test to see whether Cairo airport is up for dealing with regular A380 services. The route is currently served by Boeing 777-300 aircraft on all of Emirates’ three-daily departures between the two cities. Emirates will be bumping up the number of services to 25 at the end of October with an additional four weekly flights.
“Our close relationship with Egypt spans over 30 years and we reaffirm our commitment to the country by operating our iconic A380 to Cairo,” commented the airline’s chief operating officer Adel Al Redha.
“We are setting the stage to make the popular A380 experience a part of our scheduled service to Cairo. Egypt has always been a significant destination for us in the region, and we are humbled to be able to play a role in making aviation history in Egypt,” he continued.
Emirates first started flying to Egypt in 1986 with just three flights per week and has since carried more than 7.3 million passengers to and from Cairo.
By far the largest operator of the Airbus A380, Emirates currently has 112 of the double-deck aircraft in its fleet A380s and another 11 pending delivery. The airline says the aircraft will remain in its fleet for at least the next two decades after Airbus took the decision to stop production of the model.
Emirates currently has open orders for the brand new Boeing 777X and 787 Dreamliner, as well as Airbus A330neo’s and A350’s. Analysts expect the airline to drop at least one of these orders – most likely the 787 Dreamliner.
With an average flight time of more than three hours, the A380 service between Dubai and Cairo at least allows some time to enjoy the aircraft. Whereas passengers who fly on one of two daily A380 services between Dubai and Muscat hardly have time to get out of their seats – in July, Emirates inaugurated the shortest A380 flight between the two cities.
At just 340 kilometres, the flight time is a mere 40 minutes – just five minutes more than the time it takes to clean the plane ready for the return flight.