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Aldrin Takes First Emirates Flight to America

The world’s second man to set foot on the moon, in the first-ever such space mission, took off on Emirates’ nonstop first flight to New York.  Astronaut Edwin ‘Buzz’ Aldrin and mission commander Neil Armstrong walked into the history books when they climbed down the ladder of their Apollo XI lunar lander on 20th July, 1969.
On 1st June 2004, Colonel Aldrin traveled on board Emirates’ Airbus A340-500 from Dubai to New York with Emirates’ delegation headed by Maurice Flanagan CBE, Vice Chairman & Group President of the Dubai-based airline. 

Madeleine Albright, the US Secretary of State in the Clinton administration and a current member of the board of directors of the New York Stock Exchange, also flew to JFK Airport on the same flight, following her attendance yesterday at the Seventh Commencement Exercise of the American University of Dubai, where she delivered the keynote address. 

And this time, in place of a cramped Apollo spacecraft seat, Col. Aldrin flew in luxury in Emirates’ A345 First Class Suite and unrivalled standards of in-flight comfort.

After sampling the facilities in the First Class Suite he exclaimed: “I haven’t seen anything like it! It’s very different from the first class cabins I have flown in on other airlines and is a remarkable feat of engineering and luxury.”

First Class customers on this ultra long-range jet relax in $175,000 suites with flat beds and privacy doors, and can phone cabin crew in the galley to ask for meals to be served at their seat whenever they wish.


Every passenger in every cabin enjoys unprecedented service and attention; an innovative cabin lighting system helps reduce jetlag; and customers in all classes can relax with more than 500 channels of video and audio entertainment.

Maurice Flanagan said: “From today, Emirates is carrying customers to five continents and we hope they will find our award-winning on-board service really out of this world.

“Our remarkable new A340-500 may not fly them to the moon, but it will reach any place on earth with no more than a single stop. These unique standards of onboard comfort will enable us to remain market leaders.”

The new link offers excellent connections via Dubai for customers travelling from North America to the Gulf, Africa, Indian sub-continent and Asia. Further routes between Dubai and the US, Canada and South America will follow soon.

Thanks to a network spanning 76 cities in 53 countries; one of the world’s youngest fleets; and a track record of ongoing innovation, Emirates has itself made headlines as one of the world’s fastest-growing and most successful airlines. 

Its new Big Apple route now links America’s largest city and top overseas visitor market with Dubai, the undisputed commercial and tourism capital of the Gulf.

Meanwhile, as Dubai International Airport expands to handle 60 million travellers annually, the city’s visionary rulers have pledged to attract 15 million visitors a year by 2010 and are campaigning worldwide to boost tourism and commerce.
Emirates’ A340-500s depart Dubai every day at 8:00am, reaching JFK’s ultra-modern Terminal 4 at 2:00 pm that same day. Return flights leave JFK at 11:30 pm and land back in Dubai at 8:20 pm next evening.

The airline is promoting a number of attractive offers to launch the new service. First class customers may stay three nights free, and Business class two nights free, at any of seven US Ritz-Carlton hotels.

Alternatively First and Business customers on the route may opt for seven or four nights’ free car hire, with unlimited mileage, vehicle registration and insurance all included. Both sets of offers are available from now until 31st August.

Passengers connecting onto the service via Dubai in either direction also enjoy special benefits at the spacious Dubai International Airport terminal, including access to its G-Force health club and First, Business or Marhaba lounges.