Emirates, voted the World’s Best Airline in the 2016 Skytrax World Airline Awards, announced that it will operate the first ever scheduled commercial Airbus A380 flight to South America when it upgrades its Dubai (DXB) – Sao Paulo (GRU) service on 26 March.
Replacing the existing Boeing 777-300ER used on this route, the A380 service will mark the airline’s 10th year of operations in Brazil, which it began with daily flights between Dubai and Sao Paulo in October 2007. Back then, Emirates had already made history becoming the first airline to connect the Middle East and South America with a non-stop direct flight service. In 2012, Emirates expanded its presence in Brazil with the start of a daily service between Dubai and Rio de Janeiro.
“The Emirates A380 is an iconic aircraft that continues to excite our customers and set the benchmark for travel comfort in commercial flying. We look forward to offering the award-winning Emirates A380 experience to our customers and to continue contributing to the economic success of Brazil,” said Hubert Frach, Emirates Divisional Senior Vice President, Commercial Operations, West. “The switch to the A380 offers a total of 959 additional seats per week in each direction meeting a growing demand from travellers on the route and demonstrating our commitment to Brazil and to the South American region.”
Sao Paulo will join more than 40 destinations on Emirates’ global network served by its highly popular A380 aircraft, including Narita (commencing March 26, 2017), Bangkok, Hong Kong, Beijing, Taipei, Seoul, Shanghai, and Guangzhou. The introduction of Emirates’ A380 service from Guarulhos International Airport, Sao Paulo, makes it possible for Brazilian travellers to fly only on A380s to their final destinations, particularly when to travelling to Asian cities, via Dubai.
From 26 March, EK261 will become an A380 flight, leaving Dubai (DXB) every day at 08:35 and arriving in Sao Paulo (GRU) at 16:30. The return flight, EK262, departs Sao Paulo (GRU) at 01:25 and lands in Dubai (DXB) at 22:55.
Recently in October 2016, Emirates announced a codeshare and frequent flyer programme partnership with GOL Linhas Aéreas Inteligentes S.A (“GOL”) allowing customers to purchase connecting flights on both airlines using one reservation, and a seamless ticketing, check-in, boarding and baggage check experience during the entire journey. Passengers booking flights from multiple destinations in Brazil with GOL, including Porte Alegre, Salvador, Belo Horizonte, Curitiba and Brasilia, will now be able to connect in Sao Paulo and fly the Emirates A380 to many destinations worldwide.
Emirates is the world’s largest operator of A380s, with 92 currently in its fleet and a further 50 on order. Since 2008, the airline has carried over 65 million passengers on its flagship aircraft.
Emirates will deploy its three class A380 on the Sao Paulo route, offering a total of 491 seats, with 14 private suites in First Class, 76 lie flat seats in Business Class and 401 seats in spacious Economy Class cabin.