Emirates is replacing Boeing 777-300ERs with Airbus A380s on its routes from Dubai to San Francisco and Houston, from December 1 and December 3 respectively.
Replacement of Boeing 777-300ERs by Airbus A380 superjumbos will provide more passenger and cargo capacity on both routes, according to Emirates.
In Emirates configuration, the Airbus A380 will offer an additional 135 seats to San Francisco and 137 seats to Houston, representing a 38 per cent increase in overall passenger capacity.
The Airbus A380 will also offer 80 per cent more seats than Emirates’ Boeing 777-300ERs in premium-class cabins. In addition to offering a choice of 14 First Class Private Suites and 76 lie-flat Business Class seats, the A380 offers 399 Economy Class seats to San Francisco and 401 to Houston.
“Emirates continues to see strong customer demand from our U.S. gateways. Since 2007, we have carried over 2.3 million passengers on the San Francisco and Houston routes, and our flagship A380 will allow us to connect even more people and facilitate trade between these important U.S. cities and the Middle East, India, Africa and beyond,” says Hubert Frach, Emirates’ divisional senior vice president, commercial operations west.
The Emirates service from San Francisco operates daily as EK226, departing San Francisco International Airport (IATA code SFO) at 3:30 p.m. and arriving at Dubai International Airport (DXB) the following day at 7:25 p.m, local time. Outbound flight EK225 leaves DXB at 8:50 a,m. and lands at SFO at 12:50 p.m. the same day, local time.
Emirates’ daily flight EK211 to Houston Bush Intercontinental Airport (IAH) departs DXB at 9:30 a.m. and reaches IAH at 4:05 p.m. the same day, local time. The return flight, EK212, pushes back from the gate at IAH at 6:25 p.m. and touches down at DXB at 7:05 p.m. the next day, local time.
San Francisco and Houston will be the fourth and fifth U.S. gateways that Emirates serves with A380s, joining New York JFK, Los Angeles, and Dallas/Fort Worth (the DFW A380 service is due to commence on October 1). By December, Emirates will be serving both its Texan destinations with A380s.
Emirates started flying to Houston in December 2007, directly connecting the city with the energy sector hubs in Dubai and the Middle East. Since then, according to the airline, Emirates has seen steady growth in business and leisure travelers, thanks to the city’s strong international community and corporate industries and last year connected around 190,000 people and over 7,900 tons of cargo from a range of industries including the construction and automotive sectors.
San Francisco is a city which Emirates has served since December 2008. As a major corporate and tourism destination, it offers travelers access to culture and cuisine from Napa Valley to Silicon Valley. Emirates’ ties to the famous California city extend beyond the airport, as a supporter of the San Francisco Symphony orchestra.
According to Emirates, San Francisco and Houston will be the 31st and 32nd destinations that the airline serves with A380s. Tickets for these routes are available for purchase through customers’ preferred travel agencies, Emirates’ ticket offices or online at www.emirates.com.
Emirates has served the United States since 2004. Its 70 weekly flights include routes from New York JFK, with two daily flights operated by A380s and a daily flight linking JFK and Milan Malpensa Airport (MXP) operated by a Boeing 777-300ER; Los Angeles, also operated by A380s; and San Francisco, Seattle, Dallas/Fort Worth, Houston, Washington Dulles. and Boston, all served by Boeing 777-300ERs.
At DXB, Emirates’ U.S. flights connect with the airline’s flights to more than 140 destinations across six continents. On August 5, Emirates will launch service from Dubai to its ninth U.S. gateway, Chicago O’Hare International Airport.
Exports carried from the United States by Emirates SkyCargo include medical equipment, electronics, machine parts, pharmaceuticals and consumer products, bound for markets in the Middle East, Africa and Asia.