Dubai based carrier, Emirates, is continuing its rapid expansion in North America, and has recently announced several major expansions in North America. After these changes, Emirates will have a total of 105 weekly departures from the United States, more than many competing carriers in Europe.
One announcement comes as no surprise to most, as Emirates is going to upgrade the equipment flying on the Chicago route from a 266 passenger Boeing 777-200LR to a 364 passenger Boeing 777-300ER. Emirates’ Chicago route is the carrier’s newest route, beginning on August 5th of 2014. The equipment upgrade to the 777-300ER will begin on May 1st of this year. According to sources at Chicago O’Hare, Emirates plans to bring in the Airbus A380 eventually, or go to two daily 777-300ERs if O’Hare still cannot accommodate the A380 due to necessary construction.
Emirates will also be adding another daily frequency to Boston. Emirates began service to Boston on March 10th, 2014 with a Boeing 777-200LR. On August 1st, the service was upgraded on the route to a 777-300ER to provide service to more passengers. Now, Emirates will launch a second daily flight to Boston. Emirates rapid expansion in Boston is aided by their codeshare with JetBlue, which is based out of Boston. This allows Emirates to carry passengers to many destinations they do not serve in the U.S., but that JetBlue serves. Despite the recent growth in Boston with the addition of Japan Airlines, Cathay Pacific, Hainan, and Turkish, Emirates is still the only Middle Eastern carrier to serve Boston.
“Our Boston service will further develop this exciting gateway into the northeastern United States,” Chief Executive of Emirates, His Highness Sheikh Ahmed bin Saeed Al Maktoum, stated in 2014. “Based on passenger demand, we believe the time is right to further boost our U.S operations, while stimulating channels of trade and tourism to and from the state of Massachusetts and the wider New England region.”
In addition, Emirates will be adding another daily flight to Seattle. The second daily flight will begin on July 7th, 2015. The new flight will operate with a Boeing 777-200LR, which will complement the already daily Boeing 777-300ER expansion. Emirates entered the Seattle Market in 2012 and has seen steady growth since. The growth has been aided by the partnership Emirates has created with Seattle based carrier, Alaska Airlines. The partnership with Alaska allows Emirates passengers to connect to Alaska, Hawaii, and cities up and down the west coast as well as small Pacific Northwest Cities.
Yet another Emirates A380 is making its way to the United States as Emirates will deploy its flagship aircraft on the New York JFK – Milan – Dubai route. Emirates fought hard in Italian courts to keep this route after many thought it was unfair to Italian flag-carrier, Alitalia, which also operates this route. This A380 will replace the Boeing 777-300ER, which currently serves this route. After the introduction of the A380 0n this route on June 1st, JFK will see a total of four daily A380s from Emirates, with the other three A380s operating as daily direct flights from Dubai.
Along with expanded flights to Orlando, Milan and Boston, Emirates will make Orlando its 10th U.S. destination when it adds a daily flight beginning September 1st, 2015. The flight will be served by a Boeing 777-200LR aircraft. This is an interesting destination for Emirates as it is close to Atlanta, from which Delta operates a daily flight to Dubai. Delta has been rumored to be potentially considering leaving Dubai, even as Middle Eastern carriers have yet to expand to Atlanta.
Emirates’ President Tim Cook stated “Orlando is one of the world’s premier leisure and conference destinations, a dynamic business centre and a destination which Emirates has long wished to serve.”