By Hemal Gosai
Emirates Expands Premium Economy to New Cities
This past week, Emirates announced an expansion of their premium economy offering, making it available across more routes. Premium Economy was initially not a focus for the airline, but over the years its popularity has been growing and airlines have quickly come to see the dollar signs tagged to it.
Emirates dove head first into Premium Economy with an initial debut of the cabin on flights to London, Paris and Sydney. Now, the airline is expanding its Premium Economy offering service to five more cities in its route network starting in December.
The airline will bring its premium economy cabin and service to the United States on December 1 to New York’s JFK airport with its newly retrofitted Airbus A380 aircraft. Additionally, the carrier will start offering the cabin on flights to San Francisco starting next year on February 15.
Flights to Auckland, New Zealand will have the Premium Economy Product offering starting on January 15.
Then Melbourne on EK 406 and EK 407 on February 1, 2023. This would be the second destination in Australia where premium economy is offered after Sydney.
The expansion is rounded off with the addition on Singapore starting on March 1, 2023 and operating as EK 354 and EK 355.
Along with the new premium cabin offerings on the routes mentioned above, there will also be a further expansion to follow.
Sydney: Emirates will offer premium economy on all flights to the city starting on December 15, 2022
London: Heathrow will see its third daily service with premium economy on January 1, 2023 on EK 005 and EK 006.
New York: JFK will have a second A380 offering premium economy on EK 201 and EK 201 starting March 15 2023
This is all part of a massive multi-billion dollar fleet retrofit program that will overhaul a significant portion of the fleet. From November, the airline will start cabin interior upgrades and retrofits of 67 Airbus A380 and 53 Boeing 777 aircraft. The entire retrofit will is expected to be completed by 2025 and will include the installation of nearly 4,000 premium economy seats, upgrades to over 5,000 business class seats, and the refurbishment of 728 first-class suites.
Alongside the cabin upgrades, the airline is also revamping onboard service offerings with the addition of unlimited caviar in first class. New menus across all cabins with a focus on adding vegan options for flyers to sample.
All coming at a time of a revival in demand, Emirates is close to recovering 75 percent of its pre-pandemic A380 network. The airline plans to serve close to a third of its network with A380s with service to cities like Houston, Bengaluru, Perth, Auckland, Hong Kong, and Kuala Lumpur.
The airline is focusing on using the recovery from the pandemic as a time to continue to push boundaries on offerings and grow into new and existing markets.