Sister Cities Shanghai and Dubai are set to come even
closer when Emirates launches its second daily service to Shanghai on 1st February
2008.Emirates launched passenger services to Shanghai in April 2004 and received a
rousing welcome from both passengers and the travel trade alike. The demand on the
route began on a strong note and continued to grow steadily thereafter, with seat
load factors consistently above 90 per cent - a dream run for any international
Ghaith Al Ghaith, Emirates’ Executive Vice President Commercial Operations Worldwide
said: “Emirates’ current daily service to Shanghai has been exceptionally successful
and we are an airline of choice right across our customer spectru
m - both passenger and trade. From Shanghai, we currently offer excellent
connections to Africa and Europe; the route is served by state-of-the-art aircraft;
and we offer culturally-sensitive services - from cabin crew who speak the language
to Chinese food. And we intend to repeat our successful business model on the route.
“We are confident that the second service to Shanghai will taste the same phenomenal
success given our experience; the continued dominance of the Chinese economy; and
Shanghai’s increasing appeal to business and leisure travellers from around
Emirates’ worldwide network. We are seeing a sharp increase in demand since the UAE
and Chinese governments have signed a Memorandum of Understanding to facilitate
travel for Chinese tourist groups to the UAE.”
Shanghai is a much-sought-after destination among tourists for its popular art and
ancient culture; its ultra-modern architectural landmarks such as Oriental Pearl TV
Tower and Jinmao Tower; the nightlife on the
Bund, and the extensive shopping arcades. As a nerve centre for trade, commerce and
business, the city is a must-visit destination for executives who conduct, or
intend to conduct, business with China.
Trade and tourism ties between China and Dubai have grown significantly stronger in
the past few years. Since Emirates’ launch to Shanghai, the number of Chinese hotel
visitors in Dubai has more than doubled from 32,265 in 2004 to 68,504 in 2006. Trade
ties are worth billions of dollars, and in 2006 China grabbed the top spot among
Dubai’s importing countries, nudging India to second place. Dubai imported US$7.6
billion worth of Chinese goods and exported in excess of US$134 million to China.
Emirates’ second daily will be served by the airline’s wide-bodied, plush Airbus
A340-300 with 267 seats in a three-class configuration - 12 seats in First Class, 42
in Business and 213 in Economy - offering 13 tonnes of cargo capacity. On Tuesdays,
the service will be operated by an Airbu
s A330-200, with 12 seats in First Class, 42 in Business and 183 in Economy.
The new service EK304 will provide passengers a convenient choice of timings,
departing Dubai in the morning at 10:35 hours to reach Shanghai at 22:25 hours. The
return flight EK305 departs Shanghai at 06:15 hours to reach Dubai at 12:50 hours.
Emirates currently operates a Boeing 777-300ER daily to Shanghai offering 364 seats
in a three-class configuration - 12 seats in First Class, 42 in Business and 310 in
Economy - and 23 tonnes of belly-hold capacity.
Emirates SkyCargo also operates six weekly Boeing 747-400F freighter services to
Shanghai, offering a capacity of 120 tonnes each.
Every year, Emirates supports the interests of the city’s sporting community as
Official Airline of the high-profile BMW Asian Open in Shanghai. The Emirates
branding will also be prominent at the FIFA Women’s World Cup 2007, being held in
September this year.
In China, besides Shanghai, Emirates also serves Be
ijing with a double daily service, and Hong Kong with 17 weekly passenger flights
and 13 weekly freighter services.