Dubai airline Emirates has confirmed that many of its flights will be cancelled and rescheduled during the closure of Dubai International Airport’s southern runway between April 16 and May 30 for maintenance.
The airline said 48 of its aircraft will not be utilised during the period, with a 25 per cent reduction in the overall number of flights operated during the 45-day period.
Some of the operating aircraft will also be changed during the period to reduce the impact on passengers.
The airline also announced its adjusted flight schedule for 2019, which will see certain flights cancelled.
The airline will suspend flights EK 418/419 between Bangkok and Sydney from June 1, 2019. Emirates will continue to serve Sydney with three direct flights a day to Dubai.
From March 31, Emirates will suspend EK 424/425 and serve Perth with a once daily Airbus A380 service non-stop from Dubai.
The carrier also announced increased capacity to destinations in Africa and Europe.
Casablanca, Morocco: Emirates will operate a second daily flight starting June 1 to Casablanca. The service will be operated by a Boeing 777-300ER aircraft, which will complement the airline’s existing daily Airbus A380 flight.
Abuja, Nigeria: Three additional flights will be operated every week on Boeing 777-300ER aircraft to Abuja from June 1, increasing the frequency to the Nigerian city to a daily service.
Accra, Ghana: Four additional Boeing 777-300ER flights will be operated a week to the Ghanian capital, bringing Emirates’ total service to 11 weekly flights to Accra from June 2.
Conakry, Guinea and Dakar, Senegal: The capitals of Guinea and Senegal will be serviced by one additional linked flight every week starting from June 1 on a Boeing 777-300ER aircraft.
“The additional services will satisfy the increased demand that the airline has witnessed in these markets”, the airline said.
Multiple destinations across Europe will also be served by additional Emirates flights during peak travel season leading up to and lasting through the summer of 2019. These destinations include:
Athens, Greece: Emirates will deploy a second daily flight to Athens between March 31 and October 26 2019. A Boeing 777-300ER aircraft will operate the service between March 31 and April 15 and between October 1- 26. During the summer months from May 31 to September 31, an Airbus A380 aircraft will be deployed to meet additional demand. Emirates will not operate the second daily flight during the runway closure period.
Rome, Italy: The Italian capital will be served by three daily flights between March 31 and October 26. The third additional flight, operated with a Boeing 777-300ER, will be suspended during the runway closure.
Stockholm, Sweden: Emirates will provide additional capacity to Sweden during July and August 2019 with a double daily service on its Boeing 777-300ER aircraft.
Zagreb, Croatia: As part of the partnership between Emirates and flydubai, Emirates will once again begin operating its Boeing 777-300ER daily to Zagreb from March 31 until October 26. The daily service will be reduced to four times a week during the runway closure.
The airline also said it will deploy its Airbus A380 aircraft to certain destinations to meet peak season demand.
Boston, US: Emirates will deploy its A380 to Boston between June 1- September 30, 2019 and between December 1, 2019 and January 31, 2020 to accommodate the increased seasonal demand.
Glasgow, UK: Emirates will fly its double-decker aircraft to Scotland for the first time between April 16 and May 31, 2019. The daily service, with a total capacity of 489 seats, will replace the double daily Boeing 777-300ER service during the runway closure.
From June 1 until September 30, 2019, Emirates will resume operating a double-daily service to Glasgow with one daily Boeing 777-300ER and one Airbus A380.
Emirates will also adjust its services into South America this year.
From June 1, the airline will deploy its newly refurbished two-class Boeing 777-200LR on its daily service from Dubai to Rio de Janeiro. This service will continue from Rio de Janeiro to the Argentinian capital city of Buenos Aires four times a week, and on the remaining three days, it will operate onwards to Santiago, Chile.
With this change, Emirates will suspend its linked flight from Dubai to Santiago via Sao Paulo. Sao Paulo will continue to be served with a daily non-stop Airbus A380 service to and from Dubai.
Sir Tim Clark, Emirates Airline president said: “We are agile in deploying our aircraft to destinations where it best serves customer demand.
“The changes we are implementing to our network schedules in 2019 take into consideration global market dynamics and operational limitations including the maintenance work on Dubai Airport’s Southern Runway. Through the year, we will continue to keep a close watch on global markets and will maintain our flexibility to optimise the usage of our aircraft assets.”
Emirates also confirmed that during the financial year 2019/20, Emirates will take delivery of six new Airbus A380 aircraft and retire seven older Boeing 777 aircraft.
The airline took delivery of its last Boeing 777-300ER aircraft in November 2018 and will commence taking deliveries of the next generation Boeing 777Xs in 2020.