Emirates stated (26-Dec-2013) it will become the first airline to operate a regularly scheduled A380 service to London Gatwick Airport. From 30-Mar-2014, the airline’s 489-seat A380 will replace the Boeing 777-300ER on EK flight 09/10, bringing a 36% increase in capacity on one of its three daily services, Emirates executive VP and CCO Thierry Antinori said, “London Gatwick was our first destination in the UK when we launched our services to the airport in 1987. It continues to be a strategic gateway not only into London but also into the regions of the Southeast and we are pleased to be the first airline to introduce a daily scheduled A380 service to the airport". He continued, “Our long term strategic partnership with London Gatwick enables us to bring our flagship A380 on a regularly scheduled basis and build on our robust presence at the airport. Our support for London Gatwick’s long-term growth plans is aligned with our global strategy to optimise capacity on our major routes and to offer our passengers with ever more opportunities to fly on our A380s". Emirates’ current A380 destinations are: Amsterdam, Auckland, Bangkok, Beijing, Dubai, Hong Kong, Jeddah, Kuala Lumpur, London Heathrow, Los Angeles, Manchester, Mauritius, Melbourne, Moscow, Munich, New York JFK, Paris, Rome, Seoul, Singapore, Shanghai, Sydney, Toronto, and Brisbane. Emirates will start operating scheduled A380 services to Zurich and Barcelona from Jan-2014 and Feb-2014 respectively. [more - original PR]
Emirates to become the first airline to operate a regularly scheduled A380 service to London Gatwick
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Etihad 1H2014 results: The model's rapid evolution even more remarkable than a 28% revenue increase
It was never a question of if Etihad Airways would report revenue growth in 1H2014; the only question was the exact double-digit percentage by which it would grow. Etihad reports group revenue increased by 28%, a remarkable figure even by fast-paced Gulf standards, and one that stole most headlines. But total revenue has also been positively impacted by Etihad's acquisition of ground-based services.
Passenger revenue grew by a "slower" 14% – below the 19% increase in ASKs, although probably not all that remarkable in the short term with this rate of expansion. Yields, load factor and RPKs (in addition to profit figures) were not disclosed. Possible slowing of momentum comes as Air France-KLM and the Lufthansa Group in a letter to the European Commission accused all Gulf carriers of "excessive growth".
Etihad's acquisition of ground services has clearly helped add diversification to the model, with passenger revenue now comprising only 64% of total group revenue, lower than at Emirates or Lufthansa. Partner revenues are likely to surpass USD1 billion in 2014, but the more significant figure is 1H2014 partner revenue accounting for 23% of total passenger revenue. This too will grow as new partnerships – including major ones with Jet Airways and Alitalia – bed down. Putting planes into the sky is relatively easy; selling their seats is the challenge.
Leaving aside the controversy, Etihad is creating a remarkable new model that continues to grow multi-dimensionally in ways that detractors might be wise to concentrate on – rather than merely accelerating their efforts to rescind change.
Dubai International Airport: The world's biggest in 1Q2014, but runway works reduce full year 2014
Dubai International Airport (DXB) managed to chalk up an entire quarter in 1Q2014 as the busiest airport for international passenger traffic, edging out London Heathow International Airport (LHR), as it had threatened to do for some time.
DXB handled 18.36 million international passengers over the first three months of 2014, while LHR handled a total of 16 million passengers. Dubai had growth of 11.4%, while London Heathrow traffic grew just 0.5% for the period.
Dubai Airport’s stay at the top was short-lived however. From 01-May-2014, runway works at the airport have cut capacity by better than 20%. At present traffic and growth rates, that could reduce the airport’s total annual traffic by as much as 2 million passengers. DXB is however still on track to handle more than 70 million passengers in 2014.
Planned new capacity will allow continued high levels of growth; but southeast England is meanwhile unlikely to achieve even one additional runway within the next 10 years.