Emirates has announced that it will be upgrading its EK39/40 service between Dubai and Birmingham to an Airbus A380 from 27th March 2016.
This will be the first time the iconic and much loved A380 will fly a regular service from the region, and comes as Emirates celebrates its 15th anniversary at Birmingham Airport.
It isn't the first time this aircraft has been to the Midlands based airport, in September 2009 it was flown in to be part of Birmingham Airport's 70th anniversary celebrations and for the opening of the International Pier.
This time it will be much more of a permanent feature as Emirates will be replacing the current Boeing 777 to a two-class Airbus A380 on the lunchtime service into Birmingham, carrying 557 passengers in Economy Class and 58 in Business Class. Birmingham will be the fifth route operating the new two-class A380 since it was unveiled at the Dubai Airshow in November 2015 by Emirates. The upgrade will increase daily capacity to and from the region by 15%, and means Emirates will now offer 77 A380 flights into the UK each week, more than any other country on the Emirates network.
Emirates first launched its route to Birmingham Airport on 18 December 2000 as a daily service to Dubai, operated by a 278-seat Airbus A330. As passenger numbers have risen, Emirates has added more aircraft to the route, including a third daily service introduced this year. In the last 15 years, Emirates has carried over five million passengers between Dubai and Birmingham, with over 500,000 travelling in 2015 so far.
Laurie Berryman, Emirates Vice President, UK, said: “In 15 years of operating at Birmingham, Emirates has experienced exceptional levels of growth driven by an increase in demand from the Midlands. The A380 is hugely popular amongst our passengers as it provides a unique level of service that has become synonymous with the Emirates brand. We are very excited to be the first airline to introduce the iconic A380 into the region and look forward to more of our customers enjoying the experience of flying on the world’s largest passenger aircraft.
“The launch of the new service, combined with our ongoing investment into the region, represents the huge significance we place on Birmingham and its role as a gateway to Dubai and across the globe. As we move into 2016, we look forward to another 15 successful years in the Midlands.”
Paul Kehoe, Chief Executive of Birmingham Airport, said: “This is really great news for the Airport and our community. The A380 will not only give an additional 188 seats a day from Birmingham but will also offer customers that want to experience the magnificent A380 aircraft an opportunity to now do so from the Midlands region and I’m certain that the service, just like the programme spanning 15 years from Birmingham Airport, will be hugely successful. We would like thank Emirates for its commitment to our region and congratulate the team on serving Birmingham to Dubai and beyond for 15 very fruitful years.”
Emirates’ wider contribution to the Midlands economy has grown alongside its expansion at Birmingham Airport, connecting local people and businesses to global destinations and markets. It now employs 31 permanent staff at the airport, with the Emirates SkyCargo team employing a further four people. Over five million meals have been made locally in Birmingham to serve Emirates passengers travelling to Dubai and up to 60 crew members stay at local hotels in Birmingham every night between flights. The airline also invested over £1 million in the Emirates Lounge at Birmingham Airport, which opened in October 2012.
Emirates SkyCargo, the freight division of Emirates, has helped regional businesses export products to destinations all over the world. Over the last 15 years, Emirates SkyCargo operations at Birmingham Airport have grown significantly, with volumes up 15% year-on-year in 2014–15, accounting for 60% of the air cargo market in the Midlands.
Passengers flying from the Midlands with Emirates can travel to Dubai and beyond, to an ever expanding global network, including Bali, Multan and Mashhad which all launched in 2015. Popular destinations on the Emirates network from Birmingham include Dubai, Islamabad, Bangkok, Mumbai and Hong Kong. To book a seat on the iconic aircraft visit www.emirates.com
As with all Emirates flights, passengers enjoy the extra generous Emirates baggage allowance of 30kg in Economy Class, 40kg in Business Class and 50kg in First Class (only available on the Boeing 777 service). Business Class and First Class passengers can also enjoy Emirates’ complimentary Chauffeur-drive service, to and from their flights, and access the world-class Emirates lounge at Birmingham Airport. The lounge is also available for Skywards Gold and Platinum members.
Read our destination guide for more information about Dubai.