Emirates today became the first airline in
history to begin A380 services to both Bangkok Thailand and Toronto Canada.
A380 Bangkok bound EK372 took off from Dubai
International at 9:40am local time and arrived in Bangkok at 7:00 PM local
time. A380 Toronto bound EK241 took off from Dubai
International at approximately 9:55 am local time arriving at Toronto’s Lester
B Pearson airport at approximately 3:45 pm local time.
The full press release from Emirates can be
Emirates scored a double whammy today as two
of its A380 super jumbos jetted off from Dubai to the opposite ends of the
globe, marking the aviation world’s first A380 commercial services to Bangkok
The launch of Emirates’ A380 operations –
daily to Bangkok and thrice weekly to Toronto – signals a new era of luxury air
travel to Thailand and Canada, and represents yet another milestone in the
airline’s A380 programme.
EK 372 took off from Emirates’ new home,
Terminal 3 at Dubai International Airport, at 09:40 hours* carrying 488 passengers.
It landed to a festive welcome by the Thai government at Bangkok’s Suvarnabhumi
International Airport at 19:00 hours*.
EK 241 departed Dubai with 458 passengers and
will be the first commercial A380 jet to touch down on Canadian soil at 15:45
Senior management from Emirates flew on the
two inaugural services. On arrival in Bangkok and Toronto, the A380s will be
unveiled to local media, travel trade and key government officials.
The A380 is the world’s only twin-deck
airliner that has 35 per cent more seats than its closest rival. It is
the most environmentally-advanced commercial aircraft in the sky today,
offering better fuel economy than most hybrid passenger cars. The A380 burns up
to 20 per cent less fuel per seat than today’s next largest aircraft, and is
quieter, generating less than half the noise of other aircraft on takeoff.
Tim Clark, President, Emirates Airline
said: “Emirates is delighted to
celebrate its inaugural A380 services to Thailand and Canada today. The
aircraft with its large capacity and excellent operating economies is a pillar
of growth, both for the airline and the destination. In Thailand, the
introduction of the super jumbo will support the local government’s
multi-million dollar promotional drive to boost tourism arrivals from the
high-yield Middle East region. At the same time the higher-capacity A380 will
help address the strong demand for passenger and cargo services on the
Dubai-Toronto route which is currently restricted by the bi-lateral agreement
to three flights per week.”
Hailing the arrival of Emirates’ A380 as a
positive development for Thailand’s tourism industry, Mr. Chaisak Angkasuwan, Deputy Permanent Secretary, Ministry of Transport,
Thailand said: “We are delighted
Emirates selected Bangkok as the first Far East gateway for its revolutionary
A380 product. Our current marketing and trade campaigns focus on
promoting Thailand as an ideal holiday destination in the Middle East.
Travellers from this region make multiple visits to Thailand, staying on an
average nine days and spending over USD 500 million annually. We welcome the
opportunity to partner with Emirates to grow the tourism potential from this
Despite the current economic environment, the
Middle East continues to deliver positive year-on-year growth of 5.7%. Tourist
arrivals from the UAE alone rose by 99.46% for January 2009 compared to the
same period last year.
Lloyd McCoomb, President and CEO of the Greater
Toronto Airport Authority (GTAA) said: “The
GTAA is honoured to be part of this historic day. We are pleased that this
route has proven so successful for Emirates and we are very excited to welcome
the A380 to Toronto Pearson. This is exactly what this airport was rebuilt for
– to allow for new and larger aircraft that will be the future of the airline
added: “With air travel due to triple in the next 18 years and constraints on
traffic rights and airport slots to continue, larger capacity aircraft such as
the A380 are key to Emirates’ plans to meet increasing passenger demand. We
have ordered 58 A380s and each one of these has been carefully planned for our
present and future requirements. Our next A380 destination will be Seoul on 1st
December, and will represent Emirates’ first A380 service to North East Asia.”
The Emirates’ A380 – with 14 First Class
Private Suites, 76 Business Class and 399 Economy seats – represents the latest
innovation and technology from a company recognized internationally for its
in-flight amenities and services. Unique to the Emirates aircraft are its
Shower Spas – two fully-equipped bathrooms in the First class cabins with
shower facilities. Emirates A380’s ground-breaking in-flight product also
features an Onboard Lounge for First and Business class passengers which
includes a bar with a wide range of beverages and canapés as well as an
exclusive space to socialise or simply relax.
A380 passengers enjoy an elaborate menu
created by top international chefs and complemented by the finest beverages.
Emirates’ award-winning ‘ice’ (information, communication, entertainment)
in-flight entertainment system offers more than 1000 channels of on-demand
entertainment, the largest programming currently available in the skies. Each
cabin is equipped with an advanced mood lighting system, complete with a
starlit sky, which adjusts throughout the flight to reflect the time at the
destination and to help combat the effects of jet lag.
First class passengers relax in flat-bed,
massage-equipped suites while Business class passengers enjoy a new generation
of intelligent seating designed to ensure all 76 flat-bed seats have aisle
access. Passengers in Economy will appreciate the straight walls throughout the
cabin that lend to a more spacious ambience, enhanced further by generous seats
and wider aisles.