By John Flett
Emirates Provides Certainty to European Passengers in Uncertain Times
Emirates Airlines has provided certainty to its customers ahead of the European summer holidays. The Dubai-based carrier issued a statement on Thursday advising that the airline “has been co-ordinating with its ground handling partners at airports around the world, ensuring they are up-to-date with operational requirements and are prepared to support smooth passenger movement.”
The airline announced that it is scheduled to operate 24,000 passenger flights to and from 129 airports in July and August. Confidence to key European markets was given in the release given the chaotic scenes witnessed in recent weeks at a number of airports impacted by last-minute and strategic cancellations by both airlines and airport authorities.
Emirates advised that the Airbus A380 would be deployed to over 30 cities in its network including Amsterdam, Dusseldorf, Hamburg, London Gatwick, London Heathrow, Rome, Paris, Madrid, Manchester, Milan, Vienna, and Zurich. The airline’s service to London Stansted would also be reinstated at the beginning of next month.
With airlines around the world struggling to match operational integrity with the capacity offered to the market, Emirates’ decision to provide reassurance to travelers is to be welcomed. This extends to their hub airport in Dubai with the airline confirming they have ‘worked closely with other stakeholders at Dubai Airport to support its flight schedule and services, provisioning additional resources to ensure efficient operations at the hub, including for transiting passengers.’
Emirates’ announcement comes ahead of a U.K. government deadline to airlines on Friday to confirm schedules ahead of the U.K. school holidays. The government issued an airport slot amnesty and a 22-point plan to address the continuing challenges faced by the aviation industry. The amnesty would allow airlines to not operate flights into constrained airports without fear of losing the slots at the next scheduled period.
Part of the U.K. government’s plans is to support the aviation industry to recruit, retain and train staff through a project called ‘Generation Aviation.’Along with a number of industry and third-party collaborations the government has also ‘changed the law so the industry has more flexibility to train staff and allow them to deploy staff quickly and flexibly while maintaining security standards.’ Funding has also been made available to support the initiatives and to assist commercial airports and ground operators with fixed costs.
As a result of the government ultimatum, British Airways confirmed the cancellation of 10,300 flights until October. The airline stated: “The whole aviation industry continues to face significant challenges and we’re completely focused on building resilience into our operation to give customers the certainty they deserve.” BBC News reported that this brings to 30,000 the number of BA-cancelled flights since April.