The world’s largest commercial passenger jet now flies one of the world’s shortest international routes. Emirates offers flights between Dubai and the Omani capital of Muscat – a flight that takes only 40 minutes – on a behemoth A380 double-decker superjumbo jet. The airplane has a wingspan of 262 feet, and a cabin that can hold more than 500 people.
The superjumbo is flying for two of its three scheduled daily flights on that route – a distance of around 211 miles. By comparison, the mileage between Los Angeles and Las Vegas is 300 miles. As one Emirates official noted, the flight time is “five minutes longer than the time taken to clean an A380 by a team of 42 people”.
The superjumbo is now operating on flights EK862/863 (departing Dubai at 8:25 am, and returning from Muscat at 11:15 am), and EK864/865 (departing Dubai at 4:10 pm and returning from Muscat at 7:05 pm).
Second-hand reports point to the grounding of the Boeing 737 Max jets as the root reason for the substitution, as the debacle cut into partner carrier, Flydubai’s, schedules.
The carrier’s third daily Dubai-Muscat service (EK866/867) will continue to be operated by a B777-300ER.
The A380 operating the route is configured for three classes, with 429 seats in economy, 76 in business class, and 14 first class suites.
“The incredibly popular Emirates A380 has arrived in Oman and we are pleased to give our customers traveling between Muscat and Dubai the opportunity to experience the iconic products and services on this aircraft,” said Sheikh Majid Al Mualla, Divisional Senior Vice President Commercial Operations. “This move is the latest in Emirates’ efforts to offer a well-defined range of experiences for our customers travelling for business or leisure from Oman.”
This week the airline also launched new service between Dubai and Portugal. Porto became the airline’s second destination in Portugal with four weekly flights to the city in the northern reaches of the country.
The Emirates Boeing 777-200LR, in a two class cabin configuration featuring Emirates’ newest Business Class and Economy Class seats and interiors, with 38 lie flat seats in Business Class in a 2-2-2 configuration and 264 seats in Economy Class.
“The allure of Porto, with its rich historic and cultural attractions, world famous Port wine production and location on the Douro River, has seen the city enjoy an increase in visitor numbers. Our new service will therefore contribute further to the economic growth of Porto and the wider Northern Region,” said Thierry Aucoc, Emirates’ Senior Vice President, Commercial Operations, Europe, Russian Federation and Latin America.
The flight will operate on Tuesdays, Thursdays, Saturdays and Sundays, and depart Dubai as EK197 at 9: 15 am and arrive in Porto at 2:30 pm. The return flight, EK198, will depart Porto at 5:35 pm and land in Dubai at 4:15 am the next morning.
Emirates also operates two flights a day between Dubai and Lisbon with Boeing 777-300ERs, offering more than 700 seats a day.
Meanwhile, Emirates announced it will resume daily flights to Khartoum, the capital of Sudan, on Monday, July 8.
“After closely monitoring the situation in Sudan and conducting an exhaustive review of all operational factors, we have decided to resume our services to Khartoum. This will help support local business and increase access to international markets, as well as benefit passengers connecting to our global network,” said Orhan Abbas, Emirates’ Senior Vice President Commercial Operations, Africa.
EK733 will depart Dubai at 2:35 pm and arrive in Khartoum at 4:40 pm. The return flight, EK734, departs Khartoum at 6:10 pm and arrives in Dubai at 12:20 am the next morning, using a Boeing 777ER on the route with 8 luxurious private suites in First Class, 42 lie-flat seats in Business Class and an Economy Class with 304 seats.