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Is Emirates Mad?  
User currently offlineScbriml From United Kingdom, joined Jul 2003, 15343 posts, RR: 45
Posted (12 years 8 months 4 days 6 hours ago) and read 3135 times:
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I've flown a few times with Emirates now, and I've seen planes that are absolutely full, and ones that were just about empty. All my full flights have been LHR-DBX, it's my connections from DBX that have been very variable.

Aside from a single A310, the smallest plane in Emirates fleet is the A332. I've flown DBX-KWI and the plane was about 70% full, I've flown DBX-DOH early morning (full plane) and mid afternoon (nearly empty, playing 'spot the other pax').

The question is, seeing as most other airlines in the region use A320 type aircraft on these short regional legs (1-2 hours max), is Emirates mad to only use A332s? It just can't be very efficient to fly an A332 DBX-DOH (1 hour gate to gate) with about 40 pax on it vs same load on a A320 type (or even smaller).

Does Emirates have an unspoken policy of only flying widebody a/c? Do they take the attitude - if it's full we make a pile of cash, if it's not, we lose a bit? Do they think the odd low yield flight is a price worth paying for not having to introduce another fleet type?

I'm not knocking Emirates, I think they're a great airline. The service and f/as are always excellent (I've flown both business & economy). I have to say that those A332s are a joy to fly in - very comfortable and very quiet.

Time flies like an arrow. Fruit flies like a banana!
11 replies: All unread, jump to last
User currently offline9V-SVE From Singapore, joined Nov 2001, 2066 posts, RR: 1
Reply 1, posted (12 years 8 months 4 days 5 hours ago) and read 2989 times:

Asians simply prefer widebodies. JAL operates regional routes with a mix of 747, 767, and a couple 777s here and there. The backbone of CX' regional network is the A333 (bigger than EK A332!) supported by 777s. SQ operates ALL regionals with 777s now.

BTW Emirates is indeed mad in some other areas....ordering 40+ A380s in an instant plus 30+ 777s and tons (40+) of A345s/A346s...not to mention the 9 A343s...and i heard that ex-DXB they get free oil...

[Edited 2003-09-26 10:30:15]

User currently offlineUTA_flyinghigh From Tunisia, joined Oct 2001, 6495 posts, RR: 48
Reply 2, posted (12 years 8 months 4 days 5 hours ago) and read 2965 times:

two words : oil money Big grin
with that, you can do what you want lol...

Fly to live, live to fly - Air France/KLM Flying Blue Platinum, BMI Diamond Club Gold, Emirates Skywards
User currently offlineDoorsToManual From , joined Dec 1969, posts, RR:
Reply 3, posted (12 years 8 months 4 days 4 hours ago) and read 2828 times:

UTA, one word is enough. Big grin

However, it seems as if they are making good profits, and one has to note the effort Dubai is making in trying to divsersify its activities away from just oil...tourism, banking and maybe soon, IT.

User currently offlineSkymonster From , joined Dec 1969, posts, RR:
Reply 4, posted (12 years 8 months 4 days 4 hours ago) and read 2780 times:

Nope, they're not mad... In fact, they're one of the better run airlines that I've encountered, and I have had dealing with them behind the scenes as well as being a passenger of theirs on occasions. And its got nothing to do with oil either...

A lot of EK's longer operations are in the six-seven hour range, to Europe and the like, or into Africa. That means an A330 or 777 can't do more than one round trip a day, but even allowing for a longish turn down-line it will still have a fair amount of free time at home base. Its cheaper to run an A330 on a one hour sector when it would otherwise be doing nothing, than it is to buy a dedicated short haul fleet. [This is much the same as why Cathay Pacific sometimes schedule 747-400s on the one and a half hour Hong Kong-Teipei service - yes, its a very busy route, but it also keeps a 747 busy that would otherwise be sat in Hong Kong and reduces the number of regional airplanes they need]

Furthermore, using the A330 gives them flexibility to accommodate more passengers at peak periods (early/late and at peak travel periods), and it also gives them much more operational flexibility if they have tech problems than they would get from a small but dedicated short haul/narrow body fleet. Finally, they save through fleet commonality and reduced spares inventory, as well as on licencing and training costs (flight deck, engineers, cabin, etc) as they have to support fewer aircraft types.

Like I said at the top, I've found EK to be a pretty switched on airline and whilst they [arguably] may not have the funding problems of some other carriers, they certainly don't in my experience aren't mad.


User currently offlineBlueskies From Finland, joined Jul 2001, 59 posts, RR: 0
Reply 5, posted (12 years 8 months 4 days 3 hours ago) and read 2604 times:

Emirates is also doing well in cargo business, so widebodies are maybe not so stupid choise at all.


User currently offlineMas777 From United Kingdom, joined Jul 1999, 2939 posts, RR: 6
Reply 6, posted (12 years 8 months 3 days 23 hours ago) and read 2321 times:

Singapore Airlines has a similar policy - no narrow bodies in its fleet...

User currently offlineZizou From Australia, joined Oct 2000, 1536 posts, RR: 4
Reply 7, posted (12 years 8 months 3 days 23 hours ago) and read 2162 times:

Simliar story with Emirates new route's SYD-AKL and MEL-AKL, both hardly full but the cargo loads that they are generating is to be seen to be believed. Good move it seems, otherwise both aircrafts would be sitting on the tarmac for 12 hours or so doing absolutely nothing. Now BNE-AKL will be next, its impressive how fast Emirates has made a name for itself here in Australia. Now wonder Qantas is so worried about EK...

User currently offlineVfw614 From Germany, joined Dec 2001, 4511 posts, RR: 4
Reply 8, posted (12 years 8 months 3 days 23 hours ago) and read 2079 times:

I seem to remember that an article stated that some of the short hops to places like Doha are more or less cargo flights that further distribute the cargo that arrivces on Emirates Cargo and on the pax flights. The pax are more or less an extra and are carried as they have the pax cabin anyway ...  Wink/being sarcastic

Emirates cargo ops must be breathtakingly successful. They just added an all cargo flight to FRA as the two daily pax flights cannot haul all the cargo in their bellies - and this on top to cargo and pax flights to nearby Dusseldorf.

User currently offlineC172Akula From Canada, joined Mar 2001, 1017 posts, RR: 3
Reply 9, posted (12 years 8 months 3 days 22 hours ago) and read 1967 times:

I read an article a while back about Emirates, and one of their more senior people said this in regards to their aircraft use: "We continue to intelligently misuse our aircraft on some routes."

I guess it works out in the end for them.

User currently offlineScbriml From United Kingdom, joined Jul 2003, 15343 posts, RR: 45
Reply 10, posted (12 years 8 months 3 days 22 hours ago) and read 1878 times:
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Well, there's certainly a lot of freight passing through DBX. I had a 5 hour transit there on Wednesday and there was a constant stream of 747 freighters as well as an assortment of exotic other stuff (well, if you're from the UK anyway), Il-76s, An-12s, etc.

I think that DBX isn't even the #1 freight airport in the country - that goes to Sharja (sp?), just a few miles away.

Time flies like an arrow. Fruit flies like a banana!
User currently offlineETA Unknown From Comoros, joined Jun 2001, 2297 posts, RR: 0
Reply 11, posted (12 years 8 months 3 days 22 hours ago) and read 1823 times:

Yes- many of the intra-Gulf flights serve mainly a cargo purpose. I believe the only flights that are real revenue dogs are to Sana'a, but as correctly pointed out above, mis-using an A330 is cheaper than having a small number of A320's.

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