Emirates has reinforced its commitment to Germany by officially inaugurating its new service to Hamburg in the north of the country. Hamburg is Emirates’ fourth gateway to Germany and is in addition to the airline’s existing flights to Munich, Frankfurt and Düsseldorf.
The airline started its services to Hamburg on March 1st, but today’s flight carried a top-level Emirates delegation led by HH Sheikh Ahmed bin Saeed Al-Maktoum, Chairman and Chief Executive Emirates Airline & Group, to meet with officials and executives from the City of Hamburg and mark the official inauguration of the airline’s services.
Other top Emirates executives who will be in Hamburg include Tim Clark, President Emirates Airline, Ghaith Al Ghaith, Emirates Executive Vice President Commercial Operations Worldwide, and a host of other senior management and guests of the Emirates Group.
Sheikh Ahmed said at a media conference at Hamburg Airport today:
“Emirates is extremely pleased to be here in Hamburg and to open our fourth gateway into Germany. The country is one of our biggest and most important markets and we are very glad to be offering our passengers the ability to fly to Dubai and onward around our extensive worldwide network directly from Hamburg.”
“Hamburg is also significant for Emirates as it is a host city for the 2006 FIFA World Cup?, of which Emirates is an Official Partner. We look forward to bringing thousands of football fans, business executives and those wishing to experience everything that Hamburg has to offer from around the world to this great and historic city.”
Emirates already experiences excellent relationships with German business and leisure travellers, and this additional service is a further opportunity for the airline to strengthen its presence in the country.
This new service enables the airline to introduce more people to the Emirates brand and offer them direct long-haul services from their local airport.
The number of visitors from Germany to Dubai has been escalating rapidly, with recent figures showing that more than 236,000 Germans visited Dubai in 2004 based on hotel occupation, up from 156,000 visitors the previous year - which demonstrates how popular Dubai is becoming among German visitors. Emirates is confident that this additional service from Germany will encourage more people to visit the emirate on business and pleasure.
With an eye on the strengthening trade ties between Germany and Dubai, Emirates’ services will cater to the growing demand from travellers as well as shippers looking for speedy air links between the huge port of Hamburg and Dubai, the Middle East’s major trading hub.
This service supplements Emirates existing double daily flights to Munich and Frankfurt, and its daily service to Düsseldorf (which will go to double daily from May 1st 2006).
Emirates will operate its Airbus A330-200 aircraft in a three-class configuration on the Hamburg route, offering 237 seats and 17 tonnes of bellyhold capacity. Flight EK059 will take off daily from Dubai International Airport at 08:55hrs arriving at Hamburg International Airport at 12:55hrs the same day. The return flight, EK060, will depart Hamburg at 15:35hrs, arriving Dubai at 00:45hrs the next morning.
Emirates currently employs more than 250 German nationals - including many flight-deck and cabin crew - that work with the more than 100 different nationalities employed by the company.
Emirates operates a fleet of 88 all wide-bodied aircraft which is among the youngest in the skies, with an average age of 55 months - more than eight years less than the industry average.
The airline plans to more than double its size in the next six years, and 2006 sees a dynamic expansion plan in progress with new services scheduled for Bangalore and Kolkata in India and Addis Ababa in Ethiopia, as well as destinations in Japan and China.