Emirates’ newest Airbus A380 entered service earlier this week, doubling the number of premium economy seats offered by the Dubai-based airline. The aircraft is one of two set to be delivered to the airline this year, with only four A380 deliveries outstanding.
A year ago, the Airbus A380 was practically non-existent in our skies. In the 12 months since, the giant has slowly returned to service. Most jets remain parked, although Emirates is slowly removing its jets from an extended stay on the ground as it increases its network and capacity.
Straight into service
Dubai-based giant Emirates has wasted no time putting its latest aircraft into service. The carrier received its 118th Airbus A380 from Airbus last Wednesday. Upon delivery, the aircraft flew to Dubai, arriving on May 13th. Here, it will have undergone an entry to service check.
With the aircraft getting the all-clear, it has joined 19 other active Airbus A380s in the Emirates fleet. On Tuesday, the aircraft operated its first passenger flight, heading to Paris and back.
On Wednesday and Thursday, the giant of the skies flew to Frankfurt and back, marking the first time that the airline’s new premium economy cabin had been flown to the German aviation hub.
Today, the aircraft was given a slightly shorter flight to operate. The giant departed Dubai International Airport (DXB) at 16:02 as flight EK2803. Cruising at an altitude of 40,000 feet, the aircraft is expected to arrive in its neighboring country at 18:12. After a turnaround in the Saudi Arabian city of Jeddah, the aircraft will return to its Dubai home.
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Which Airbus A380 aircraft is Emirates currently flying?
According to ch-aviation.com, aside from A6-EVP, 19 other Emirates Airbus A380 aircraft are currently flying. The oldest of these is A6-EEU, with an age of 7.55 years, while the average age of the airline’s active A380s is 3.41 years old. This compares to an average age of 6.9 years across the entire fleet.
Of the airline’s 145 current Boeing 777 aircraft, 141 are currently active, with four stored according to ch-aviaiton.com’s fleet data. This means that the airline’s only option to add additional seats is to reactive further Airbus A380 aircraft. Emirates’ Airbus A380s count for 55% of the airline’s capacity, with 61,579 seats across the fleet. This compares to 48,522 seats on the Boeing 777 fleet.
Emirates is set to take the last four Airbus A380s to be built over the next year. According to the current delivery plan, one more aircraft delivery is currently scheduled for 2021. The remaining three should join the airline in 2022. The A380 production line is set to be modified into an A320 family production line.
When did you last fly on an Emirates Airbus A380? Let us know what you think and why in the comments below.