Emirates has announced it’ll return the Airbus A380 for a limited time with service to Vienna.
The return of the A380 marks a momentous occasion for Vienna and Austria, which hasn’t seen the A380 for several years, with the 777-300ER operating all services.
As part of the adjustments from February 21, 2024, until March 30, 2024, which concludes the winter flight schedule, EK127 and EK128 will be upgraded to the A380-800.
Currently, the Boeing 777-300ER occupies the service, which has been deemed enough for some time. However, the A380 will boost capacity and thus add further options for travelling to and from Vienna.
Emirates says that EK127 departs Dubai at 0855 and arrives in Vienna at 1225. After almost 3 hours on the ground, EK128 departs Vienna at 1510 and arrives in Dubai at 2340. These times are local to their respective destinations.
The three-class Airbus A380 is set to feature on the route to Vienna, with the company excited about the return of the world’s largest passenger plane and the possibilities it brings.
A total of 429 seats are found in Economy Class of Emirates’ three class A380, with 76 in Business and 14 in First Class. Emirates says that by upgrading to the A380, there’ll be almost a 40% jump in total passengers that can be transported between the two locations.
A Long-Awaited Return
The return of the Airbus A380 comes for the first time since August 2022, when the aircraft type was last featured with service through to Vienna.
Emirates notes that the ability to deploy the A380 for just over a month towards the end of the winter flight schedule is a testament to the dynamic nature of Emirates’ operation. Additionally, it highlights how the company is forward-thinking and emphasises demand-orientated fleet planning.
The Boeing 777-300ER, however, will not be going from service to Vienna. The airline says the Boeing widebody will continue operating the EK126/125 evening flight. However, the other daytime service will welcome the A380.
Emirates Reliance On The A380
Emirates remains the world’s largest operator of the A380. The carrier says it has 116 units in its fleet, with almost 90 spread across its global network.
The sheer size of the A380 has been a deterrence for several companies worldwide that have been unable to fill the world’s largest passenger plane. However, for Emirates, it has been an opportunity.
The Dubai-based carrier has been one of the few airlines worldwide that’s been able to make the plane work within their fleet, and for the airline, it has done so superbly.
Even during the height of the pandemic, when travel demand dropped to 0, the airline believed the A380 would play a pivotal role looking ahead, and they had no intention of saying goodbye to the series.
As demand has surged and slot restrictions become a more pressing concern, Emirates believes an aircraft like the A380 will be valuable to their day-to-day operation for the long term.