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Emirates Airline EK

Thursday 21 March 2019 (UAE)   

Emirates Airline (EK)

Emirates Airlines general information

Emirates Airline (airline code EK) is a Dubai based carrier launched in October 1985 with first flights to Karachi in Pakistan and Mumbai (then Bombay) in India. At the end of February 2009, EK had flights on routes to 101 cities in 61 different countries, with about 100 flights a week just to the UK (91 in January 2007). From 14 October 2008, EK started transferring passenger arrivals and departures from Dubai Airport Terminal 1 (T1) to the new Terminal 3 (T3), starting with GCC and USA flights. Passengers on flights to other destinations were gradually phased over to T3 from October to December 2008 after which all EK departures from, and arrivals to, Dubai operated out of T3 (most other airlines operate from Terminal 1). The actual flights went to and from the new Concourse 2 connected to Terminal 3 but confusingly, a few Emirates aircraft still arrived at, or departed from, Concourse 1 (the Sheikh Rashid Terminal) which meant that passengers had to scurry back and forth from T3. See the Dubai Airport information with a more detailed explanation of the terminal vs concourse difference.

  • Emirates Airline move to Jebel Ali Airport - not expected to happen until 2025-2027 (May 2012 reports).
World's best airlines awards 2013 by AirlineRatings (announced 14 Jan 2014)
  • Emirates Airline won the AirlineRatings (AR) website first place award for Best First Class, and Best In-Flight Entertainment (IFE). Air New Zealand was Best Airline overall.
Airline safety awards 2013 (announced 08 Jan 2014)
  • Emirates Airline was 3rd safest airline in the world for 2013 according to the website Airline Ratings in a survey of 448 arilines around the world - regional, international, and low-cost carriers.
  • Airlines are awarded 1-7 stars based on 7 criteria or questions, one of which is "Does the airline operate only Russian built aircraft? If yes an additional star will be taken off the total."
  • Only the past 10 years is taken into account with respect to history of incidents: "Has the airline maintained a fatality free record for the past 10 years?" A star for yes, no star for no.
  • Other criteria are: IOSA certified, EU Blacklist, FAA endorsement, ICAO safety parameters (0-2 stars), grounded or not by CAA of the home country.
  • It wasn't clear how Airline Ratings ranked the 137 airlines which were awarded 7 stars.
  • Top ten list according to AR is (in rank order 1-10): Qantas (Australia), Air New Zealand (NZ), Emirates Airline (Dubai, UAE), Etihad Airways (Abu Dhabi, UAE), Cathay Pacific (Hong Kong), Singapore Airlines (Singapore), Virgin Atlantic (UK), EVA Air (Taiwan), All Nippon Airways (ANA, Japan), Royal Jordanian (Jordan).
  • Airlines with 1 star rankings: Kam Air, Scat, Zest Airways.
  • Airlines with 0 stars or no ranking: AirAsia Zest, Airlines PNG, Asiana Airlines, Buddha Air, easyJet, Nepal Airlines, Rex Australia, Yeti Airlines.
Emirates Aviation Experience (London, UK)
  • Emirates plans to open an indoor theme park attraction thing on the south side of the Emirates Air Line - the gondola ride over the River Thames.
  • The Emirates Aviation Experience will have flight simulators (open to the public) and educational displays explaining how planes take-off and fly.
  • Opening date expected to be in July 2013.
  • Area 300 sq meters. Opening times, admission fees, contact details not supplied.
Emirates-Qantas partnership but no buyout
  • 16 Dec 2013 - The West Australian reported that Emirates was not interested in buying a stake in Qantas after Qantas forecast a 6 month loss for Jul-Dec 2013 of A$300 (about AED 1bn). EK President, Tim Clark, was quoted as saying "... equity is not on the table."
  • 20 Nov 2012 update - The Australian Competition and Consumer Commission (ACCC) was reported as saying they would probably approve the Emirates-Qantas alliance in March 2013, but limited to 5 years, not 10 years as requested. The ACCC chairman Rod Sims was quoted as saying "The ACCC considers that the alliance is likely to result in material, although not substantial, benefits to Australian consumers."
  • 05 Nov 2012 - the SMH (Sydney Morning Herald) carried a report about a response from Qantas to the Virgin objections to the alliance, which had a footnote about concerns regarding Israeli passport holders transiting Dubai and non-Israeli passports with Israeli stamps entering Dubai, saying both situations would be permitted (although there wasn't an obvious official source confirming the permissions).
  • 24 Sep 2012 - Virgin Australia has opposed the EK-Qantas partnership in a filing with the Australian Competition and Consumer Commission, saying the alliance would "give rise to anti-competitive detriment" (SMH report).
  • 06 Sept 2012 press release: Emirates and Qantas announced a 10 year partnership which includes codeshare flights and joint access for Qantas and EK passengers to frequent flyer benefits, lounges, priority check in, etc.
    • Qantas will establish a hub in Dubai for European flights, and launch daily A380 flights from Sydney and Melbourne to London via the new A380 terminal at Dubai Airport.
    • Emirates Airline will flights to Australia will connect with Qantas' Australian domestic network, and the two airlines will coordinate flights Australia and New Zealand, and between Australia and South East Asia.
    • Neither company will take an equity stake in the other.
    • The partnership is expected to start in April 2013, pending regulatory approval from the Australian Competition and Consumer Commission (ACCC).
Emirates Airline or Emirates Airlines?
  • Actually, the correct name for the airline seems to be just "Emirates" but because Dubai is part of the United Arab Emirates, which is sometimes referred to as "the Emirates," people and publications often refer to "Emirates" the airline company as Emirates Airline or Emirates Airlines. But not Emirates Airways.
  • The Emirates website and other EK published material either has just "Emirates" or sometimes "Emirates Airline" rather than "Emirates Airlines" (mostly).
Emirates Airline the world's largest airline?
  • 10 May 2011 - In the Emirates 2010-2011 financial report, Sheikh Ahmed, the Emirates Airline CEO, said "With 182,757 million available seat kilometres, we are now the world's largest airline by scheduled international passenger kilometres flown." If domestic passenger km are included, then Emirates drops down the list a bit, with Delta Airlines, American Airlines, and United Airlines ahead.
Emirates Airline fuel surcharges
  • 01 March 2012 - fuel surcharges will be applied to all EK destinations (except New Zealand - from Australia?). Surcharges reported as AED 60-170 in economy class, and AED 390-610 in first and business class. Other reports said one way surcharge of AED 50 in economy class, and AED 200 in business class. Additional air fare increase of about AED 100-1000 will apply from 07 March 2012 (except for NZ destinations ... from Australia?) (announced 27 February 2012).
  • 08 May 2011 - fuel surcharges removed due to falling oil prices.
  • 18 April 2011 - fuel surcharges introduced (AED 40-150 in economy class one way, AED 130-520 in first and business class one way, double for return flights, depending on destination).
Emirates Airline check-in at Dubai Metro stations
  • Several Dubai Metro stations allow EK passengers to check-in at the station before travelling to the airport - at least 2 hours prior to departure time.
  • Stations include Mall of the Emirates, Burj Khalifa (The Dubai Mall), and Dubai Financial Centre (02 Aug 2010 press release).
Emirates Airline visas to UAE
  • Emirates Airline can arrange online a 30 day Dubai tourist visa or a 96 hour Dubai transit visa for nationals of some countries if they are booked on an EK flight (press release 17 May 2010).
  • List of countries which can obtain a UAE visa online with an Emirates booking includes (as of May 2010, check with EK if country not in list): Angola, Brazil, China, Ghana, India, Indonesia, Iran, Ivory Coast, Kenya, Lebanon, Libya, Maldives, Mauritius, Morocco, Pakistan, Philippines, Russia, Senegal, Seychelles, South Africa, Sri Lanka, Sudan, Syria, Tanzania, Thailand, Tunisia, Turkey.
  • Nationalities of the countries which can obtain a Dubai visa on arrival do not need to pre-apply for a visa (although those countries are included in the EK list of online visa allowable countries).
  • As of May 2010, a 96-hour visa will cost US$44 (AED 160), and a 30-day visa will cost US$57 (AED 210). Additional service charges and fees might apply.
  • Passengers should apply online at the EK website (click "Manage a Booking"), and will receive visa via email, if approved, in about 4 working days.
  • Visas are arranged in partnership with VFS Global which operate the Dubai Visa Processing Centres (DVPC) internationally.
  • The DNRD in Dubai issues entry permits, not DVPC or Emirates, so having an EK booking does not guarantee a visa.
List of Emirates Airlines flights from Dubai International Airport DXB
  • As of 05 Sep 2013, Emirates Airline flies from Dubai to 135 destinations in 77 countries (press release about new daily flights to Stockholm).

See Emirates Airlines destination list. Includes information about

  • Emirates A380 routes
  • Emirates Airlines and FlyDubai connections
  • Emirates Airlines new routes in 2010
  • Emirates Airlines baggage handling
  • Emirates Airlines Freighter routes (Emirates SkyCargo)
  • Emirates Airline free bus service to Abu Dhabi and Al Ain for passengers booked on EK flights to and from Dubai.
Emirates Airline Lounges
Emirates Airline A380 onboard shisha smoking lounges
  • On 11 May 2013 the satirical journal or website, The Pan Arabian Enquirer (The PAE), ran a story with the headline Emirates to introduce shisha lounges onboard A380 fleet. As The PAE makes it clear that all its stories are satire, it follows that this one was also. But apparently a number of people thought it was real, or don't understand what satire is. Anyway, just to clarify:
  • Emirates are not introducing shisha smoking lounges or allowing any other sort of smoking on their A380 planes, or any other aircraft in their fleet. The story was made up, or as they say in Karama, a Genuine Fake.
Emirates Airline First Class Lounges
  • Auckland International Airport
  • Bangkok
  • Beijing
  • Birmingham
  • Brisbane
  • Colombo - new Emirates Lounge opening at Bandaranaike International Airport (BIA, CMB), Katunayaka announced 18 June 2012 (WAM). Facility available for First and Business class passengers, and Skywards Gold members. Cost $1.5 million, area 5,778 square feet, capacity 118 passengers. Facilities include 58 leather armchairs, dining area with 54 seats, Business Center with 6 seats, Wi-Fi internet, outdoor terrace with seating, buffet dining, bar, TV viewing area with international channels, prayer room, male and female showers and washrooms with special needs facilities.
  • Delhi
  • Dubai Airport Terminal 3 Concourse 1 - opening announced 03 August 2011. Area 1,058 sq meters. Facilities include reclining armchairs, large TVs, showers, business center, wireless LAN connection, smoking area, dining areas with the usual food and beverage offerings.
  • Dubai Airport Concourse 2
  • Dusseldorf
  • Frankfurt
  • Hamburg
  • Hong Kong
  • Istanbul - Ataturk Airport (IST), opening announced 22 May 2012, for First Class, Business Class, and Skywards Gold members. Is the 30th Emirates Lounge to open, located in the transit area of the International Terminal, area 520 sq meters with 100 seats.
  • Johannesburg
  • Kuala Lumpur
  • London Gatwick
  • London Heathrow
  • Manchester
  • Munich
  • Melbourne
  • Mumbai
  • New York - JFK
  • Paris - Charles de Gaulle
  • Perth
  • Singapore
  • Shanghai
  • Sydney
  • Zurich
Emirates Airline Business Class Lounges
  • Colombo - see First Class Lounge
Emirates Airlines financial performance

Emirates Airline financial year runs from 01 April to 31 March.

  • 2011-2012 profit AED 2.6 billion?
  • 2010-2011 profit AED 5.6 billion?
  • 2010 estimated profit more than AED 3.67 billion (US$1 billion+) according to The National 07 June 2010, based on comments from the President of Emirates, Tim Clark (referring back to 2009 profit): Profits "will be bigger than that this year", Mr Clark added, saying passenger and cargo demand remain strong. "We will exceed it. We are well ahead [of our forecasts] already."
  • 2009 profit of AED 3.54 billion (US$964 million) according to 12 May 2010 statements, or AED 4.04 billion (US$1.1 billion) if DNATA Group profit included.
  • 2009 estimated profit over AED 3.67 billion (US$1 billion) - Gulf News report 01 December 2009 with a comment from Emirates Group Vice-Chairman, Maurice Flanagan: "We just announced our first-half results, which are very good and our second-half results will even be better, and as our chairman said, our profits will cross $1 billion this year."
Emirates Airline Awards (not a complete list)
  • 19 Jun 2013 - Emirates won the Skytrax "2013 World's Best Airline" award, also the "Best Middle East Airline" and "World’s Best Inflight Entertainment" awards for 2013.
  • 14 Dec 2012 - Emirates won "World's Leading Airline Website" and "World's Leading Airline Rewards Program" (for Skywards) at the World Travel Awards for 2012. Emirates also won the "Middle East's Leading Airline Economy Class" award. The "World's Leading Airline" award went to Etihad.
  • 18 Jul 2012 - Emirates was one of the top 10 airlines in the Skytrax 2012 World Airline Awards - in 8th place. Qatar Airways was 1st, Etihad Airways was 6th. Emirates received an award for World's Best Inflight Entertainment.
  • 29 Apr 2012 (press release) - Emirates SkyCargo voted Cargo Airline of the Year, Best Middle East Cargo Airline (for the 24th year running), and Best African Cargo Airline at the Cargo Airline of the Year 2012 awards. The awards are organised by the Air Cargo News magazine and determined by votes from freight forwarders around the world.
  • 08 Mar 2012 (press release) - 2012 Gold "Airline of the Year" award Air Transport News (ATN), at a ceremony in Athens.
  • 08 Feb 2011 - Airline of the Year award for 2011 from Air Transport World (ATW), received by Tim Clark, President of EK, on 08 February 2011 in Washington DC, USA.
  • October 2010 - Center for Asia Pacific Aviation (CAPA) Airline of the Year Award 2010 - announced October 2010.
  • 2009 - Skytrax World Airline Awards 2009 - Emirates Airlines was in 5th place in the Skytrax Airline of the Year 2009 awards (Cathay Pacific won the top gong, and Etihad was in 7th spot). Emirates also got the top spot for the Best Inflight Entertainment award.
Emirates Airline aircraft numbers and capacity
  • 03 Mar 2011 (news reports) - Emirates Airline became the third largest airline in the world by capacity as of March 2011. First and second largest are Delta Airlines and American Airlines, and third largest was previously United Airlines. EK aircraft numbers reported were a total of 144 aircraft in the EK fleet including 15 Airbus A380 superjumbos (with 75 more on order), and 4 stretched Boeing 777-300ER planes (with another 49 on order). Capacity figures according to Innovata are: Delta Air Lines - 28.4 billion Available Seat Kilometers (ASK); American Airlines - 21.8 bn ASK; Emirates - 16.9 bn ASK (+9.9% from March 2010); United - 16 bn ASK (-0.6%).
  Destinations Passengers carried Aircraft         Information
Date/Year   DXB Airport Total A3802 A350 B 777-300ER2 B 777 Total Date
2025               350-450 17 Nov 20134
2020     70 million         250 24 Oct 20133
2018       1155          
2015 145             200-210 13 Jun 2012
2014       575          
2013 Dec       44 (96)5          
2013 Oct 135     (53)     (64)3   24 Oct 20133
2012       315       169  
2012 Jun 124                
2011 Mar       15 (75) (70) 4 (49)   144  
2010 Sep               150 (203)  
2010 Jul             86 (46)    
2010 Mar       11          
2009     27.7 million1           09 Feb 2011
2009 Mar       4          
2008   22 million 22.8 million1           09 Feb 2011
2007   20 million              
  • Numbers in italics are estimates or forecasts.
  1. Figures for EK financial year which runs from 01 April to 31 March, not 01 January to 31 December.
  2. Aircraft numbers in brackets are on order books.
  3. 24 Oct 2013 - 2020 figures according to EK press release comment from Tim Clark, President of Emirates Airline. Oct 2013 figures are 3,200 flights per week to 135 destinations in 76 different countries, including 20 new destinations since Jan 2012 (not Jan 2013), total staff 50,000 with 160 different nationalities. B777s on order are total, breakdown between 777ER and 777 not provided.
  4. Gulf News report of interview with Sheikh Ahmad bin Saeed Al Maktoum, Chairman and Chief Executive of Emirates Group.
  5. 21 Dec 2013 WAM press release - EK received delivery of 43rd and 44th A380 aircraft bringing total of 13 planes delivered in 2013. EK ordered another 50 A380s at the 2013 Dubai Airshow bringing total on order to 96. Another 13 deliveries expected in 2014, another 71 to be delivered from 2014 to 2018.
Emirates Airline jobs

Want a job with lots of travel? Try Emirates for cabin crew or pilot jobs - they are expanding and need more people. The bad news? Apparently Emirates receive about 15,000 cabin crew applications per month. For jobs and positions vacant, visit the Emirates Group Careers website at www.emiratesgroupcareers.com.

See end of page for blogs (unverified though) about working at EK.

  • 13 March 2012 (news reports) - Emirates said they would be hiring 3,800 cabin crew and 450 pilots during 2012. Total number of cabin crew up to 20,000 by end 2012. Recruitment road shows will be held in several countries, include Australia, Austria, Brazil, Canada, Czech Republic, France, Germany, Italy, Lebanon, Poland, Netherlands, New Zealand, Spain, Switzerland, Tunisia, UK.
  • 2011 - Emirates hired 4,000 cabin crew, bringing total to about 16,000.
Emirates pilot (flight crew) salaries and benefits
Grade Position Monthly basic Flying hours Monthly total (approx)
  Captain     AED 41,240
  First Officer (FO)     AED 29,145
  • Monthly salary total based on basic salary plus hourly flying pay based on 85 block hours.
  • Free accommodation provided - usually a villa for families, apartment for single pilots, villa or apartment for married pilots with no children (you might not have a choice). Accommodation allowance if not living in EK housing is AED 150,000 for FO, AED 170,000 for Captain (per annum, figures not confirmed)?
  • Salaries are tax-free in the UAE.
  • Emirates profit share scheme means additional annual bonus of several weeks basic salary (usually but not always, don't count on it).
  • Annual gratuity (is paid as an end of service gratuity when you leave, not each year).
  • Free transport to duty flights (car + driver).
Emirates cabin crew (flight attendant - FA) salaries and benefits (after increase 01 May 2008?)
Grade Position Monthly basic Flying hours Monthly total (approx)
CC.06 Purser AED 5,515 AED 87.00 AED 10k-13k
CC.05 Senior steward/stewardess (SFS) AED 4,825 AED 81.00 AED 9k-12k
CC.04 First Class AED 4,225 AED 65.50 AED 8k-10k
CC.03 Business Class AED 4,225 AED 59.50 AED 7.5k-9.5k
CC.02 Economy Class AED 3,915 AED 53.50 AED 7k-9k
  • Annual bonus depends on Emirates profits, might be equivalent to a few weeks or couple of months basic salary (but is not guaranteed every year).
  • Annual gratuity (is paid as an end of service gratuity when you leave, not each year).
  • Salaries are tax-free in the UAE.
  • Free accommodation provided (in shared apartments, 2 or 3 people per apartment usually), utilities included. Housing allowance if not living in company provided accommodation - AED 63,000 for Purser, AED 61,000 for SFS, AED 42,000 for other cabin crew (figures per annum, not confirmed).
  • Transport to and from duty flights provided (bus service).
  • Per diem allowance paid in local cash at destination, amount depends on destination (not included in monthly total in table), and should be enough to pay for three meals on a layover (guess at $50-$100 or AED 175-350 per 24 hour period). Very few layovers are longer than 24 hours.

Emirates Cabin Crew blogs. Mostly trip summaries with photos of foreign beaches, foreign currency, foreign food, foreign hotel rooms, and foreign tuk tuks. Occasionally some useful information. None will be critical of EK (or the writers will become ex-employees), see end of page for critical blogs.

  • [2016] alexkasparis.wordpress.com
  • anotherdiary.wordpress.com
  • [abandoned 2013] ashleyindubai.wordpress.com
  • [abandoned 2009] danielleindubai.blogspot.com
  • [2016] dianakistler.wordpress.com
  • [2015] flygirllulu.wordpress.com
  • flyhighdiary.com - from hellowtomorrow.wordpress.com (not related to flyhighdiary.wordpress.com or hellotomorrow.wordpress.com).
  • [2016, male cabin crew] flyichifly.wordpress.com
  • hellowtomorrow.wordpress.com > flyhighdiary.com.
  • jarofmemoirs.wordpress.com
  • [2016] jessicasjourneywithemirates.wordpress.com
  • [2016] lifeofanemiratescrew.wordpress.com
  • [2016] lipstickandluggage.wordpress.com - moved to lipstickandluggage.me (does not automatically forward).
  • [abandoned 2015?] meagancummins.wordpress.com
  • [abandoned 2015?] mybigfatdubailife.wordpress.com
  • mytimeinthesky.wordpress.com
  • [abandoned 2015?] redrevivaldreams.wordpress.com
  • [2016] sophiehart.wordpress.com
  • [deleted] starsthrowin.wordpress.com
  • [2015] stewardesspassaport.wordpress.com
  • [2016] thedubaidiaries.wordpress.com - forwards to www.thedubaidiaries.me.
  • [2015] theindependentmuse.wordpress.com
  • [2016] touchoftravel.wordpress.com
  • volarelearningtofly.wordpress.com - forwards to www.volarelearningtofly.com.
  • [2015] wingedwonderer.wordpress.com
  • [abandoned 2013?] worldoutsidehk.wordpress.com

Pilot or pilot's wife blogs (there are no or almost no pilot husbands in Dubai)

  • [2016] dubaiunveiled.wordpress.com - forwards to www.dubaiunveiled.com.
Emirates Airlines sponsorship deals
  • 2011 Rugby World Cup in New Zealand - Emirates is a Worldwide Partner
  • Arsenal (UK) - sponsorship deal worth AED 580 million (US$158m), expires in 2021, EK hopes to renew according to a report in The National on 12 August 2010. Update 25 Nov 2012 (WAM) - Emirates Airline and Arsenal Football Club announced a new 150 million sponsorship deal which extends the shirt partnership by 5 years to the end of the 2018/2019 season, and extends the naming of the Arsenal stadium as Emirates Stadium to 2028.
  • AC Milan football team (AFP report 10 February 2010) - size and length of sponsorship deal not announced.
  • Emirates Team New Zealand - NZ sailing team.
  • England Rugby League Team
  • FIFA World Cup 2010 - Emirates is the Official Partner.
  • Hamburg football club (Germany)
  • International Rugby Board (IRB)
  • Olympiakos (Greece)
  • Paris Saint-Germain (France) - sponsorship renewed to 2018/2019 season.
  • Rugby World Cup Sevens
  • Super League (UK?)
  • UAE Rugby Association (UAERA) - sponsorship deal signed 30 March 2011. Duration 5 years with Emirates becoming the official airline for the UAERA, and players will wear shirts with the Emirates logo.
  • UK Rugby Football League
  • US Eagles and USA Rugby - sponsorship deal for both men's and women's teams announced 03 June 2010, valid for 6 years.
  • US Rugby Sevens teams (both men and women) - from December 2009
Emirates Air Line cable car across the River Thames, London
  • 18 Jul 2013 - some controversy emerged to do with the Emirates Air Line River Thames cable car. The cable car is owned by Transport for London (TfL) and/or Docklands Light Railway (DLR), and sponsored by Emirates Airline. As part of the sponsorship deal, the contract includes a clause which places some restrictions on ownership of the cable car installation, interpreted as excluding Israeli interests, and also as restricting anyone from TfL from criticising anyone from EK Group, the UAE government, or UAE royal families. Those conditions probably sound fairly normal to most people familiar with the UAE, however UK and Israeli newspapers, and some UK politicians, seemed to have a bit of a problem with the clause. The controversy was resolved with Emirates reportedly planning to modify the contract.
    • 17 Jul 2013 - news reports quoted Danny Price, the cable car boss, as saying "We have agreed with Emirates that this clause should be removed from the contract. The intention behind it was always to give them the option to withdraw their sponsorship should we sell the Emirates Air Line to someone else, something common in such contracts." And an unnamed spokesman for Emirates saying "The clause was not intended to discriminate against any particular person, religion or country. Given the misinterpretation of this clause Emirates has agreed with TfL to remove it. ...Emirates, a global multicultural, multimedia company, does not discriminate against passengers of any race, people or religion." What? EK is a "multimedia" company? The reference to "passengers" seemed odd also, given that the controversy wasn't about EK passengers in the first place.
    • 16 Jul 2013 - The Independent (UK) reported ... This includes a ban on future sales to any entity with which the state does not have diplomatic ties - which includes Israel. ... A clause in the contract states that no member of TfL shall make "any statement in connection with the subject matter of this contract that is disparaging or defamatory of the Sponsor, any member of the Emirates Group, or any person forming any part of the Government of Dubai and/or the Federal Government of the United Arab Emirates or any member of any of the Royal Families of the United Arab Emirates." The same report quoted Danny Price, TfL’s head of the Emirates Air Line, as saying "Nothing in the contract prevents the expression of opinion about the scheme. We would always expect our spokespeople to base their statements upon facts, and would therefore be able to offer whatever assessment of the scheme we saw fit."
  • 25 Apr 2013 - Arabian Business reported that Transport for London (TfL), the owner of the River Thames cable car, was seeking new sponsors as a result of increased construction and operating costs. The project cost ended up being £62m, with £36m coming from the EK sponsorship (spread over 10 years), and £8m from the European Regional Development Fund. Operating costs are £150,000 per week resulting in losses of £50,000 per week.
  • 28 Jun 2012 - The Emirates Air Line cable car opened. The Mayor of London, Boris Johnson, was quoted by Reuters as saying "I think that people have got to bear in mind that the build cost of this cable car is 45 million pounds, of that 36 million pounds has been contributed by Emirates Airline, who are sponsoring it," responding to comments about the cost to taxpayers of the cable car. Capacity is 2,500 people per hour, trip duration is 5 minutes. Single trip fare is 4.30 pounds, or 3.20 pounds for those using the Oyster travel card.
  • The new (in 2012 - expected to open in time for the 2012 Summer Olympic Games in London) cable car across the River Thames has been named the Emirates Air-Line cable car, under a 10 year sponsorship deal with Emirates Airline, worth about £36 million (AED 215 million), announced or reported 07 October 2011.
  • The cable car is 1 km long and runs between Greenwich Peninsula on the south side and Royal Docks on the north side of the river. Both stations have been renamed as Emirates Greenwich Peninsula (connects to North Greenwich station on the Jubilee Line) and Emirates Royal Docks (connects to Royal Victoria station on the Docklands Light Rail - DLR) as part of the Emirates Airline sponsorship deal. London Underground maps were updated with the corporate names in December 2011?
  • Take a virtual trip on the Emirates Air Line cable car - watch the YouTube video ...

Emirates Airline aircraft orders
  • 18 Nov 2013 - Emirates announced at the Dubai Airshow an order worth US$99 billion at list prices of 150 Boeing 777X aircraft with an additional 50 purchase rights, and 50 Airbus A380s in addition to current fleet and order book. Actual negotiated value of the deal not disclosed in news reports. It was reportedly the largest aircraft order of any civil airline to date (again ... it's not the first time EK places the largest ever order for aircraft).
  • 14 Nov 2011 (news reports) - Emirates announced at the start of the Dubai Air Show an order for 50 Boeing 777-ER aircraft worth AED 66 billion ($18 billion), with options for another 20 planes worth $8 billion. Deliveries expected to start from 2015.
  • 06 Aug 2010 - the significant orders by Emirates in June and July 2010 roughly coincided with the cancellation of orders for 50 Airbus and Boeing aircraft worth about AED 30 billion (US$8 bn) from Dubai Aerospace Enterprise (DAE) according to Airbus and Boeing order books on their websites. Apparently Mohammed Al Zarooni, the new DAE Chairman, told Reuters "I have no comment on that," (Reuters 06 August 2010).
  • 19 Jul 2010 - Emirates and Boeing announced an order of 30 Boeing 777-300ERs (Extended Range) at the 2010 Farnborough International Airshow. Actual price to be paid by EK wasn't disclosed but the value of the planes is about $9 billion (AED 33 billion) for walk-in customers at the Boeing High Street Shop before discounts or summer sale prices. The press release said "Eighteen of these were previously attributed to an unidentified customer on Boeing's Orders and Deliveries website." Total 777s on order is now 46. Emirates already operates 86 777s making it the largest 777 operator in the world.
  • 19 Jul 2010 - Emirates announced at the Farnorough Air Show an order of Engine Alliance (a joint venture between General Electric and Pratt & Whitney) GP7200 engines for its 32 Airbus A380 aircraft ordered in June 2010. The contract is worth about $4.8 billion (AED 17.6 billion) including spare engines, and a fleet management agreement for the maintenance, overhaul and repair of the engines.
  • 01 Jul 2010 - DAE is renegotiating some previous orders for aircraft from Airbus and Boeing, according to a Reuters report. Adding fuel to the speculation that renegotiated or cancelled orders from DAE might show up as new orders by Emirates Airline.
  • 28 Jun 2010 - a French newspaper, Les Echos, reported that Dubai Aerospace Enterprise (DAE) was renegotiating orders for 220 aircraft from Airbus and Boeing, and some of those orders might become Emirates Airline orders. A Reuters report quoted the newspaper as saying "It seems that the debt-laden emirate has chosen to turn part of its deliveries into new contracts for Emirates (airlines)," referring to the emirate of Dubai but without giving a source. DAE is a Dubai Government owned company that was planning to lease aircraft, but isn't now. Both EK and DAE are owned by the Dubai Government, and Sheikh Ahmed Bin Saeed Al Maktoum is Chairman of both DAE and EK Group.
  • 18 Jun 2010 - France reportedly rejects a request from Emirates (and Etihad, and Air Arabia) for more landing slots. Seven were asked for, one for Lyon was granted. Perhaps the French airport landing slot authorities don't know that Airbus planes are made in France (partly), nor that the three UAE airline operators, especially EK, are placing big orders with Airbus, resulting in more jobs for the French.
  • 09 Jun 2010 - Emirates announced at the ILA 2010 Berlin Air Show an order of 32 Airbus A380 planes at a list price of US$11.5 billion / AED 42 billion (about US$360m or AED 1.3 bn per plane) but how much discount Emirates received was not disclosed.
    • The June 2010 news brought the total number of A380s on the EK order book to 90 (including 9 already delivered, and one on the way at the time of the new order), out of a total of 234 bought by airlines around the world, and making Emirates the largest A380 customer. In second place is Qantas with 20 planes.
    • Emirates plans to have all 90 A380s in service by 2017. But the best laid plans ...
    • As of 09 June 2010, the EK order book (planes not yet delivered) had 80 Airbus A380s, 70 Airbus A350s, 18 Boeing 777-300s, and 7 Boeing Air Freighters. Total of 143 aircraft worth about $48 billion at list prices.
  • 11 Nov 2007 - Emirates announced at the 2007 Dubai Airshow orders and options worth about US$35 billion for 11 Airbus A380s, 120 Airbus A350s, and 12 Boeing 777-300ERs (press release 11 November 2007). Other sources said the order was for 11 Airbus A380s, and 70 A350s, worth $20 billion / AED 74 billion at list prices, the biggest order by value ever placed for Airbus.
  • Nov 2005 Dubai Airshow - Emirates Airlines announces an order of 42 Boeing 777s worth US$9.7 billion at list prices, consisting of 24 Boeing 777-300ERs, 10 777-200LR Worldliners, and 8 777 Freighters. EK order book prior to new order was 23 777-300ERs, 45 A380s, 20 A340-600s, and 2 Airbus A310Fs worth a total of US$37.4 billion for the 132 aircraft (now up to 174 aircraft worth US$47.1 billion).
  • Jun 2003 - at the Paris Air Show, Emirates ordered 23 more A380s, and some other planes in an order worth US$19 billion - the largest single aircraft order ever. Total number of EK A380 planes on order is up to 45.
  • Dec 2001 - at the Dubai Airshow, Emirates ordered 15 A380s and some other planes in a deal worth US$15 billion.
  • Jul 2000 - Emirates signed up for 5 passenger A3XXs and 3 cargo A3XXs at the Farnborough Air Show. This was later modified to (or increased by?) 5 passenger and 2 cargo A3XX planes in a deal worth US$1.5 billion.
  • Apr 2000 - Emirates said they were interested in buying the A380 (A3XX at the time).
  • 09 Jun 2010 - An A380-900 stretch version of the plane is under consideration with Emirates expressing interest in buying some. Unknown if they will be painted black, have tinted windows and an XL sized sunroof.
Emirates Airline growth
  • The Vice-Chairman, Sir Maurice Flanagan, said in comments published in the Gulf News 25 August 2010, that Emirates Airline was expected to continue to grow significantly, with double-digit growth rates annually.
  • He said "We'll grow substantially over the years ahead. On average we'll be taking [delivery of] an Airbus A380 and a Boeing 777 every month for the next 12 years"
  • Emirates Airline will need over AED 100 billion (US$28 bn) worth of funding for its new planes from 2010-2017 according to a Bloomberg report 01 September 2010 of comments by Gary Chapman, President of Emirates Group Finance Services.
  • Fleet size is 150 planes as of September 2010 with orders for another 203 aircraft through to 2017.
Emirates Airline IPO

Emirates Airline is owned by the Dubai Government, however, there is occasional talk of selling a stake to the public in an Initial Public Offering (IPO) with shares possibly listed on the Dubai Financial Market (DFM) or Nasdaq Dubai (previously the Dubai International Financial Exchange - DIFX).

  • In 2009-2010 when Dubai debt became a significant concern, there were more rumours of an Emirates Airline IPO as part of a sort of expected, or hoped for, garage sale of Dubai Government assets. Needless to say, just as with any garage sale, people don't sell their prized possessions, or only sell them very reluctantly. And Emirates Airline is one of the Dubai Government's prized assets.
  • On 28-29 November 2010, many news reports picked up on comments by the Director General of the Dubai Ruler's Court, Mohammed Ibrahim Al Shaibani, who said "The possibility of offering a stake in Emirates Airlines to the public is always there and is being studied and considered." Not so many sources reported his follow up comment which was "But it is well known that offering stakes to the public in solid commercial companies like Emirates is not always useful." Quite.
  • An Emirates Airline IPO was being reported back in 2007 shortly after they announced a large aircraft order. Reuters reported on 13 November 2007 comments from the EK Chairman, Ahmed Bin Saeed Al Maktoum, who said "We have not begun any steps so far, but the intention is there," when he was asked about plans for an IPO.
Emirates Airlines history and timeline
  • 01 December 2008 - first Emirates A380 flight, to London Heathrow (which wasn't the first A380 flight - Singapore Airlines had that honor on 25 October 2007 from Singapore to Sydney).
  • 14 October 2008 - Emirates starts transferring arrivals and departures to the new Terminal 3 at Dubai Airport.
  • 23 October 1985 - Emirates Airline officially launched by Shaikh Maktoum Bin Rashid Al Maktoum, Crown Prince of Dubai, and Deputy Prime Minister of the UAE.
Emirates Airline price-fixing
  • 27 July 2012 - Emirates Airline was fined NZD $1.5 million in the Auckland High Court in NZ for price-fixing on cargo routes during the early 2000s. The NZ NBR reported that "Emirates admitted agreeing fuel and security surcharges in Indonesia for cargo flown to New Zealand." Emirates was one of thirteen airlines that were alleged to be "colluding to fix fuel and security surcharges for air cargo shipments into and out of New Zealand during the early 2000s."
Emirates Airline incidents
  • 11 Nov 2012 - flight EK413 from Sydney to Dubai (an Airbus A380) returned to Sydney shortly after takeoff. A statement from Emirates (reported by WAM 12 Nov 2012) said it was due to an engine fault. An AP reported said there was a loud bang and quoted a passenger as saying "... we saw flames come out of the engine. The whole interior of the A380 lit up." But an anonymous Emirates spokeswoman was quoted in the same report as saying "There was no fire, no flames, no smoke. There may have been a loud bang." There were no injuries reported, and the plane landed safely.
  • 09 Apr 2012 - an EK flight burst 2 tyres on landing at Hong Kong - an EK spokeswomen was quoted as saying "Emirates confirms that flight EK384 from Bangkok to Hong Kong had two deflated tyres upon landing on April 7." No injuries to crew or passengers reported.
  • 08 Jan 2012 - flight EK413 from Sydney to Dubai reportedly departed Sydney after their 2300 curfew, at 2315, despite air traffic control in Sydney refusing permission to do so. Media reports on 09 February 2012 said that Emirates might be fined A$550,000 (AED 2.1 million) for breaching the curfew.
  • 23 Apr 2011 - an EK A380 flight was struck by lightning shortly before landing at Heathrow Airport in London. This in itself is not particularly significant (lightning strikes on aircraft are not rare), but a photographer, Chris Dawson, caught it on video and it was posted to YouTube. No injuries reported, and the plane landed without incident. No reports of overcooked chickenorfish either.
  • 02 Jul 2011 - EK flight EK533 from Cochin, India to Dubai returned to Cochin shortly after takeoff due to "technical difficulties" and was greeted by fire engines and ambulances. After a 14 hour delay the plane took off again. Reports said the plane was unable to retract the landing gear after the first take off but this was not confirmed by EK. No injuries reported.
  • 05 Mar 2011 - flight EK132 (Boeing 777-200) - flight crew reported hearing a "loud bang" after take-off from Moscow to Dubai. Status messages were reported by onboard systems shortly after, and again after landing in Dubai. A visual inspection in Dubai, found that one tire had a large cut in it, and a large piece (or pieces) of the right engine's inboard fan duct and thrust reverser were missing - the missing part was found on the ground at Moscow Domodedovo Airport (DME). The incident was to be investigated by the General Civil Aviation Authority (GCAA) in the UAE, but no report was issued (or at least, it doesn't appear to be available on their website)?
  • 14 Feb 2011 - flight EK 203 (Boeing 777-300ER) from Dubai to New York made an emergency landing at Stockholm in Sweden after smoke was detected in the cabin. Apparently an IFE cooling fan had failed. The aircraft took off again and continued to New York without further incident. No injuries reported.
  • 29 Oct 2010 - parcel bomb (or not) on EK flight - see below.
  • 01(?) Oct 2010 - flight EK743, an Airbus A340-500 (A6-ERE) aircraft, parked at Khartoum International Airport in Sudan before departing for Dubai, was hit in the tail by the wing of a KLM Airbus A330-200 (PH-AOD) aircraft as it taxied past. The EK flight was cancelled, and passengers and crew were flown back to Dubai the next day on another plane. No injuries reported.
  • 20 Mar 2009 - EK tailstrike on takeoff at Melbourne - see below.
  • 09 Apr 2004 - EK runway overshoot on takeoff at Johannesburg - see below.
  • 24 Dec 2001 - flight EK 423 from Dubai to Nairobi made an emergency landing in Aden, Yemen after a cockpit warning light indicated engine problems. No injuries reported. Another plane was flown to Aden to pick up passengers and take them on to Nairobi. Some reports said that the aircraft had been hijacked, based on a comment from an unknown source at Aden airport to AFP who apparently said "There is one hijacker on board ... It has just landed." But an EK spokeswoman was quoted by AFP as saying "One of the indicator lights came on in the cockpit and the captain decided to go to the nearest airport. ... It has just landed safely."
Emirates Airline no parcel bomb Dubai to USA - 29 October 2010
  • Emirates Flight EK201 from Dubai to New York on Friday 29 October 2010 was escorted to JFK airport by US fighter jets according to a Reuters report. The flight contained a package originating in Yemen which was to be investigated.
  • Two other packages that came out of Yemen on other cargo flights (not EK planes) on the same day were discovered in Dubai (a FedEx aircraft) and East Midlands, UK (a UPS aircraft) to contain explosive material. AFP reported on 30 October 2010 that the Chief of Dubai Police, General Dahi Khalfan, said "this was a parcel bomb and a terrorist act could have occurred"
Emirates Melbourne incident - tailstrike on take-off - 20 March 2009
  • Emirates flight EK407 (an Airbus A340) from Melbourne to Dubai dragged its tail on the runway during takeoff due to an error when entering the aircraft weight into the computer. The plane took off successfully (just barely - the plane took out the lights after the end of the runway), returned to Melbourne Airport, and made an emergency landing with ambulances and fire engines waiting to greet it. No injuries reported but passengers did say smoke appeared in the cabin.
  • The two Australian pilots resigned from Emirates shortly after returning to Dubai (on 02 April 2009?), and before the investigation into the incident was complete. There were comments that their resignation was not voluntary - media reports said things like "The two pilots involved in the March 20 incident were forced to resign 48 hours after they were flown back to Dubai."
  • The Australian Transport Safety Bureau (ATSB) investigated the incident and blamed the incorrect entry of 262 tonnes instead of 362 tonnes for the plane's weight into the electronic flight bag (a laptop computer used to provide data to the electronic flight control system on the aircraft).
Emirates Johannesburg incident - runway overshoot on takeoff - 09 April 2004
  • Emirates flight (Airbus A340-300s) from Johannesburg to Dubai hit the approach lights at the end of the runway after take-off, resulting in damage to the aircraft. The aircraft returned to Johannesburg airport for an emergency landing. No injuries reported.
  • The South African Civil Aviation Authority (SACAA) investigated the incident and said an erroneous take-off technique used by the pilot was to blame.
Emirates Airline codeshare agreements
Emirates Airline and Qantas partnership or codeshare
  • 23 Aug 2012 - Qantas announced a loss for 2011-2012 of A$245m, its first loss since it was privatised in 1995. Qantas also cancelled orders for 35 Boeing Dreamliner 787-9 aircraft. There was no update on any codeshare agreement with Emirates though.
  • 02 Aug 2012 - Bloomberg reported that a codeshare agreement between Qantas and Emirates is on the cards, and might take about 6 months to materialise. The report quoted the Chairman of EK, Sheikh Ahmed Bin Saeed Al Maktoum, as saying to reporters in Dubai the previous day "We've been engaging with them for some time, ... The objective is to eventually see Qantas fly through Dubai." A revenue sharing component was not going to be part of the deal apparently.
  • 27 Jul 2012 - although it appears that EK thinks the statement from Qantas is a rumour or is speculative, with the Khaleej Times quoting an EK spokesperson saying "Emirates does not comment on rumour or speculation" when asked for a comment.
  • 26 Jul 2012 - Qantas supplied a statement to the Australian Stock Exchange (ASX) headed "Qantas Response to Media Reports" saying "Qantas today confirmed it is in discussions with a number of airlines about potential alliances. These airlines include Emirates, among others ... Qantas's policy is not to comment on the nature or status of these discussions." Well, if Qantas doesn't comment, media publications are happy to fill that void, with the Australian Financial Review (AFR) saying "The companies are holding late-stage discussions over a code share agreement that would see Qantas fly to Dubai for the first time and rely on its new partner to transfer passengers to destinations across Europe, the ­Middle East and parts of Africa." Qantas shares rose 9-10%.
  • 11 Jun 2012 - Gulf News reported that Emirates denied any talk of buying a stake in Qantas, quoting Tim Clark, EK President, as saying "I had a chat with Alan Joyce [Qantas’ CEO] about codeshares and then the next thing we hear that Emirates is buying Qantas. It’s not true at all. We are not at all buying a stake in Qantas." However, a codeshare agreement is a possibility. Mr Clark was reported as saying "We have codeshares everywhere. And now, we do want one in Australia."
  • 25 May 2012 - Deutsche Bank speculated that Emirates might be interested in a stake in Qantas according to a Wall Street Journal (WSJ) report, quoting Deutsche Bank analyst Cameron McDonald as saying "For Emirates an investment in Qantas Domestic would provide a direct interest in a profitable Australian feeder network with dominant corporate market share." The report suggested a 30% stake in Qantas domestic could be worth A$1.9 billion. We'll assume that the WSJ knows more about financial matters than us, but given that Emirates is much more profitable than most other airlines, including Qantas, we'd wonder why Emirates would bother spending $1.9 billion on another airline which they'd have little control over, rather than simply buy some more planes and expand their own profitable network.
Emirates Airline and Sri Lankan Airlines partnership
  • Emirates Airlines bought a 43.6% stake in Sri Lankan Airlines in 1998 for about $70 million (reportedly, not confirmed).
  • Emirates then signed a 10 year agreement to take over management of Sri Lankan Airlines.
  • In December 2007, Peter Hill, the Emirates appointed Chief Executive Officer for Sri Lankan Airlines had has SL work permit cancelled after he refused to offload passengers to make room for the Sri Lankan President and a group travelling with him from the UK to Sri Lanka.
  • Emirates Airlines then announced they would not be interested in renewing the management contract, and subsequently started to try and find someone to buy their SL Airlines investment.
  • Reports in early June 2010 indicated that Emirates might be close to a deal to sell its SL Airline stake for about $55 million.
  • On 07 June 2010, a report from the Press Trust of India (PTI) said the entire stake had been sold back to the Sri Lankan Government. The Chairman of Sri Lankan Airlines, Nishantha Wickramasinghe, was quoted as saying "All shares of the Sri Lankan Airlines sold to the Emirates have been acquired,"
Last update Monday 29-Feb-2016
Related pages
Related websites (new window)
  • donotflyemirates.wordpress.com or www.donotflyemirates.org - critical blog about working at EK. Access was blocked in the UAE (in 2014 or 2015?) which might indicate EK is afraid of what it says (unless it was blocked because posts were too long-winded). Ironically, blocking it makes it look as though EK thinks it's an important website and wants to highlight it to prospective employees. Most new recruits come from outside the UAE where the site is not blocked.
  • www.emirates.com - Emirates Airline website, information and online booking (www.emirates.ae redirects to www.emirates.com).
  • www.emiratesgroupcareers.com - official EK employment and careers website.
  • www.emirates-illuminati.org - another critical website about working at EK, also blocked (both Du and Etisalat?), also presumably because EK doesn't like what it says.
  • updatefromtom.blogspot.com - yet another critical blog about EK (this time Mercator and the IT department), allegedly written by a (former) employee called Tom Burgess. Unknown if Tom Burgess really is the author.


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