Emirates has confirmed it will become the first airline to operate a regularly scheduled A380 service to London Gatwick airport.
From March 30th, the airline’s 489-seat A380 will replace the Boeing 777-300ER on EK flight 09/10, bringing a 36 per cent increase in capacity on one of its three daily flights.
“London Gatwick was our first destination in the UK when we launched our services to the airport in 1987.
“It continues to be a strategic gateway not only into London but also into the regions of the south-east and we are pleased to be the first airline to introduce a daily scheduled A380 service to the airport,” said Thierry Antinori, executive vice president, Emirates Airline.
“Our long term strategic partnership with London Gatwick enables us to bring our flagship A380 on a regularly scheduled basis and build on our robust presence at the airport.
“Our support for London Gatwick’s long-term growth plans is aligned with our global strategy to optimise capacity on our major routes and to offer our passengers with ever more opportunities to fly on our A380s.
“The A380s are highly popular with our customers because of all travel comforts - thoughtful touches and luxury features - that we have packed into it,” he continued.
The two decks of the Emirates A380 will offer 399 seats in Economy Class, 76 lie-flat seats in Business Class and 14 luxury First Class Private Suites.
Passengers travelling in premium cabins can mingle in the Onboard Lounge, and First Class passengers can arrive at their destination refreshed in one of two onboard Shower Spas.
“Scheduled A380 services further demonstrate Gatwick’s emergence as a world-class airport, which now supports routes to established and emerging markets across the globe, and is rapidly becoming London’s airport of choice for both business and leisure passengers.
“It also adds to Gatwick’s already unique mix of aircraft models and carrier types,” said Stewart Wingate, chief executive, London Gatwick.
“Emirates and Gatwick have worked successfully together for more than 25 years so we are delighted that we will welcome its iconic A380 next year.
“This news is testament to the strong partnership we have with Emirates and its confidence in Gatwick as a dynamic, ambitious airport which has vastly improved and enhanced facilities for its airlines and passengers in recent years,” continued Wingate.
Emirates is the largest operator of A380 aircraft in the world with 44 in its fleet and 96 on order, after its historic announcement to add 50 more at the Dubai Airshow in November.