Could Emirates Be Coming To Miami Soon?

Could Emirates be coming to Miami? That is what is being reported by World Airline News. The route from Dubai, which isn’t yet available for booking, is supposedly to begin from July 21st this year on a four-weekly basis using B777-300ERs. We look at why and what this could mean.

Could Emirates Be Coming To Miami Soon?
Emirates might announce Miami in the near future. Photo: Vincenzo Pace | Simple Flying.

If Dubai (DXB) to Miami (MIA) does happen, the Florida airport will be Emirates’ 11th destination in the US this year. It would be a direct replacement for Fort Lauderdale (FLL), a route served between 2016 and 2020, which was also four-weekly.

Could Emirates Be Coming To Miami Soon?
DXB-MIA is 7,845 miles as the crow flies. Image: GCMap

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Why didn’t Fort Lauderdale work?

Emirates began DXB-FLL in December 2016 partly because of the strong presence of JetBlue, a partner, at the airport. Passengers could connect via the South Florida airport to various locations in Latin America and the US.

In 2019, Emirates achieved an approximate seat load factor of 90% to/from FLL, Simple Flying previously showed. It had no real problem filling the aircraft, but passenger volume was helped by below-average fares. Indeed, its average fare for those transiting over DXB was estimated to have been 20% lower than its other US routes.

Could Emirates Be Coming To Miami Soon?
Point-to-point traffic between FLL/MIA and DXB doubled in one year following Emirates’ FLL launch in 2016. Photo: Vincenzo Pace | Simple Flying.

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Miami is a much larger market

If Emirates launches MIA, it will target the same broad markets as it did from FLL. The carrier captured approximately 45,000 round-trip passengers on its top-50 origins-and-destinations (O&Ds) from FLL over DXB in 2019. However, the potential pool from MIA to these 50 is inevitably much larger.

Some 295,000 passengers could be targeted, more than six times higher. In reality, the real figure would be different still, not just from being pre-pandemic numbers being used but also because this doesn’t include passengers ‘lost’ from no FLL service.

After Emirates launched FLL, point-to-point DXB travelers increased enormously from FLL yet nearly halved from MIA. It does, after all, make sense to travel up the road for a non-stop service, subject to price and schedule. However, if the two airports are combined, Dubai P2P traffic doubled to ~42,000 within a year.

Could Emirates Be Coming To Miami Soon?
If MIA begins, Emirates will not have the approximate 25,000 people who connected at FLL from or onto JetBlue’s services. However, the larger market from MIA will offset this. Photo: Vincenzo Pace | Simple Flying.

Qatar Airways, Turkish, and British Airways

Emirates already competed with other carriers from MIA, but it would take the fight to them. How will this affect its prices, which, as mentioned above, was a problem from FLL?

Three carriers, in particular, are especially important for Emirates’ target transit markets: Qatar Airways; Turkish Airlines; and British Airways. Between them, they’ll have 24 departures from MIA in the week beginning July 21st, as follows.

  • Turkish Airlines to Istanbul: seven-weekly
  • Qatar Airways to Doha: three-weekly
  • BA to London Heathrow: 14-weekly (21-weekly if fellow oneworld American is added)
Could Emirates Be Coming To Miami Soon?
Emirates uses the B777-300ER on over six in ten of its US flights. Photo: Vincenzo Pace | Simple Flying.

The B777-300ER

The long route to DXB would benefit from MIA’s longer runways, up to 13,016 feet, versus 9,000 feet at FLL. The larger B777-300ER (77W), with stronger economics than the B777-200LR that was used to FLL, would make sense.

In fact, Emirates’ US operations revolve around the 77W, with over six in ten flights by the type this year, analyzing OAG data reveals. The carrier has 124 77Ws in all, according to ch-aviation, with an average age of 8.2 years. Emirates has the world’s largest number of widebodies on order.

Do you think Emirates will begin Miami? If yes, how do you think it’ll do? Let us know in the comments.