Earlier this week, Emirates’ Airbus A380 returned to Frankfurt Airport for the first time in over a year. Once a day, the Dubai-based giant will operate the giant of the skies to Frankfurt, alongside another Boeing 777 service.
Frankfurt used to be one of the world’s major Airbus A380 hubs. The German aviation capital welcomed giants from Lufthansa, Qatar Airways, Asiana, Thai Airways, Singapore Airlines, and Korean Air. Recently, the only A380s at Frankfurt Airport have been Lufthansa jets resting their wings, with the odd plane departing for storage elsewhere. For the remainder of the month, the A380 will be a frequent guest of the airport.
Emirates’ A380s return to Frankfurt
Following March 22nd, 2019, Emirates cut its capacity on the route between Dubai and Frankfurt. This led to the withdrawal of the giant of the skies until further notice. We’ve now had further notice. On Saturday, the Airbus A380 returned to Frankfurt operating flight EK 47. The giant of the skies is set to serve the German aviation capital until the end of the month, with one flight a day on the following schedule,
- EK47 – Dubai (DXB) 14:40 – Frankfurt (FRA) 19:25 – Airbus A380 – 06h20m – MTWTFSS
- EK48 – Frankfurt (FRA) 22:20 – Dubai (DXB) 06:40 – Airbus A380 – 06h20m – MTWTFSS
Higher capacity = more demand?
The substitution of the Airbus A380 onto the Frankfurt route will allow the airline to increase its capacity on the route. Typically, Emirates has been targeting the giant of the skies onto routes where it can fill the jet. This suggests that the Dubai-Frankfurt-Dubai rotation is seeing high passenger frequencies.
With rising vaccination rates in Germany, the UAE carrier could well see the demand for travel increase even further. Dubai was one of the first locations to reopen to tourists and remains open to this day. The catch is that the UAE is currently listed as a risk area by the German Robert Koch Institute. This means that travelers from the country will need to quarantine for at least five days upon arrival in Germany.
We’re excited to bring our superjumbo back at Frankfurt Airport! ✈️
— Emirates Airline (@emirates) May 5, 2021
Germany starts to waive quarantine for vaccinated travelers
Several federal states recently changed the quarantine restrictions for vaccinated travelers. Hessen, where Frankfurt Airport is located in one of these. Fully vaccinated individuals (14 days since the second dose of an EU recognized vaccine) don’t have to quarantine unless traveling from a virus variant area, of which the UAE is not.
According to the latest figures, 29.6% of the population of Germany has now received one dose of the COVID-19 vaccine, while 8.3% have received both doses. With the increasing availability of vaccines, this is set to shoot up. According to the German government plan, everybody should be offered the chance to apply for a vaccine appointment from early June.
The plan states that everybody willing should be able to be fully vaccinated by September 21st. Depending on how ready other holiday destinations are to open up, Dubai could become a top travel spot for the growing population of vaccinated Germans. Lufthansa’s CEO believes that leisure travel from Germany could increase to 50% of pre-pandemic values this year.
This all makes a strong case for the Emirates Airbus A380 becoming a more permanent addition to Frankfurt Airport. However, there is another piece of good news. The UAE carrier is looking to reactivate capacity across the network, targeting 70% of pre-pandemic values by the start of the winter schedule.
The more capacity is added, the more A380s will need to be returned to service as all Boeing 777s are currently active. It would likely make sense to permanently place the A380 on the Frankfurt route, freeing up 777s for other routes with less demand.
Do you think the Airbus A380 will become a more permanent fixture at Frankfurt Airport? Let us know what you think and why in the comments below!