Emirates, one of the fastest growing airlines in the world, announced that the historic capital city of Rome will be the next destination slated for its flagship A380 aircraft. The daily A380 service will start 1st December 2011.
The announcement of Emirates’ first permanent scheduled A380 service to Italy comes on the back of its momentous June 6th landing at Rome’s Leonardo da Vinci airport to mark the celebrations for its 50th anniversary, while commemorating 150 years of Italian unification.
“The permanent service of the Emirates’ A380 to Rome underscores our commitment to Italy, having served this ever-growing market since 1992. The new A380 service will enable travellers to enjoy the unparalleled on-board amenities in all classes and the great connectivity of our network via the Dubai hub,” said Salem Obaidalla, Emirates’ Senior Vice President, Commercial Operations, Europe & Russian Federation. “We would like to express our gratitude to the airport authorities who have strategically upgraded their infrastructure to accommodate the A380. This purposeful investment will help to strengthen the economic ties and tourism links between the UAE and Italy.”
"This is a further confirmation of the successful relationship between Emirates and Aeroporti di Roma," said Elia Pistola, Aviation Director of ADR. "This represents a further development of the Emirates’ presence at Leonardo da Vinci Airport. Rome airport is the first Italian airport that can accomodate an A380 with the complete operating infrastructure. The new dedicated double bridge is a strategic investment for our airport, since the A380 is the best aircraft to serve the growing key markets where Emirates operates via Dubai."
Rome is currently served twice daily by Emirates. Coupled with a double daily service to Milan and a daily flight to Venice, the 35 weekly frequencies contribute to a US$ 4.6 billion trade relationship between Italy and the UAE.
The A380 service will operate daily as EK 97, departing Dubai at 0910hrs (local time) and arriving at Rome’s Leonardo da Vinci airport at 1235hrs (local). The return flight, EK 98, departs Rome at 1435hrs (local) and arrives in Dubai at 2305hrs (local). The arrival time of the A380 in Dubai will allow passengers from Italy to connect to its extensive network of destinations in the Far East.
With 15 A380s currently in its fleet, Emirates is the largest operator of the environmentally friendly double-decker aircraft, operating services from Dubai to London Heathrow (double-daily), Manchester, Paris Charles de Gaulle, Toronto, Seoul, Bangkok, Beijing, Shanghai, Jeddah, New York, Hong Kong, Sydney and Auckland.
From 1st October 2011, the A380 will begin serving Johannesburg, followed by Kuala Lumpur as of 1st December and then from 1st January 2012, the A380 will be deployed on the Munich route.
So far in 2011, Emirates has launched passenger flights to Basra and Geneva. Services to Copenhagen will commence on 1st August and St Petersburg will be launched on 1st November, followed by Baghdad on 13th November, and Rio and Buenos Aires in January 2012.