Emirates has pulled two Airbus A380 from its Dubai to New York route. The airline blamed the weakening global economy for the decision, and comes just eight months after it originally deployed the superjumbo on its New York route.
The move has prompted concerns over the number of A380s ordered by the Dubai-based carrier. It has the world’s largest order of superjumbos on order - 52 in total to be rolled out by 2012. The airline currently operates two to New York, one to Sydney and one to Heathrow.
The carrier will shift the two aircraft used on the New York flight to Toronto and Bangkok from the start of June, and fly the smaller 777 to New York instead.
Emirates said: “As the global economy has affected international air travel, this aircraft redeployment was based solely on a change in capacity demands in these three markets.”
The airline has denied that it is trying to renegotiate the A380 delivery schedule with Airbus, according to The Times.
According to the International Air Transport Association, global passenger numbers fell by 5.6 per cent in January compared with the same month last year. The loss of premium passengers, down 16.7 per cent, has been particularly severe.