Emirates flies ‘one off’ A380 to Chicago - Gulf Business
Now Reading
Emirates flies ‘one off’ A380 to Chicago

Emirates flies ‘one off’ A380 to Chicago

The service leaves the door open to operating the superjumbo to Chicago on a regular basis

Emirates’ tactic of drumming up interest in its A380-800s continues today with the airline operating a ‘one off’ service between Dubai and Chicago O’Hare International Airport.

EK235 departs Dubai at 0940 and arrives in Chicago 14 hours and 50 minutes later (1530 local time).

By impressing passengers and airport authorities who may never have seen or flown the A380 before, Emirates – which upgraded the route to one of its trademark B777-300ERs in May (previously served by a B777-200LR) – leaves the door open to operating the superjumbo on a regular basis.

In this instance, the training flight appears more a test of the airport’s capabilities than Emirates’. With only one gate for the 380, Chicago’s infrastructure is a world away from Emirates’ hub in Dubai International Terminal 3 – but its eight runways put many Gulf airports in the shade.

A Lufthansa A380 visited Chicago in 2007 but the double-deckers have been noticeable by their absence in the last decade. With neither United nor American flying A380s, there has not been the operational and political will to upgrade.

But O’Hare cannot resist the revenue opportunities any longer and US carriers, vocal about Gulf airline subsidy claims, may now face increased competition for east-west origin and transfer business.

The ‘Windy City’ would become Emirates’ sixth US A380 destination, complementing flights to Washington DC, New York, San Francisco, Los Angeles and Dallas. Until this month, Houston was also served by a double-decker but it has been downgraded to a B777-300ER.


Scroll To Top