Aviation, tourism and energy writer for the Business Herald

Super jumbo for longest route from NZ

Emirates plans to boost capacity on the longest non-stop route in the world between Auckland and Dubai by using a super jumbo A380 later this year.

The airline says it follows the achievement of high load factors on the Boeing 777-200LR aircraft operating the service since its introduction on March 1.

Emirates began regular services on the the 14,200km route using a smaller Boeing 777-200LR in March.

It did use a super jumbo on the inaugural flight as a one-off and said at the time it had plans to build to the higher capacity A380.

The double decker can seat 14 in first class, 76 in business class and 399 in economy class.

Emirates specially fitted out Boeing 777-200LR aircraft for the ultra-longhaul flights, carries up to 266 passengers in three classes.

Emirates president group services, Gary Chapman, said in March there was potential for the A380 to be used regularly on the non-stop route.

"As demand builds, and it's building very strongly, I can see a time when we have the A380 on it."

Emirates already operates three daily A380 services from Dubai into Auckland via Australia, as well as a daily Christchurch 777-ER service via Bangkok and Sydney.

Emirates - the world's biggest long-haul carrier - has flown here for 13 years and its three daily A380 services have built its brand in New Zealand.

Soon after Emirates' first direct flight to Dubai Qatar Airways announced it would launch flights to New Zealand.

The flights are due to start in February next year.

Qatar Airways will operate the daily flights with a Boeing 777.

At around 14,500km, the Doha to Auckland route is slightly longer than the roughly 14,200km Dubai to Auckland journey.

The Qatar Airways service is expected to take up to 18 hours and 30 minutes, compared with around 17 hours and 15 minutes for the non-stop Emirates flight.

- NZ Herald

Get the news delivered straight to your inbox

Receive the day’s news, sport and entertainment in our daily email newsletter

SIGN UP NOW

© Copyright 2016, NZME. Publishing Limited

Assembled by: (static) on production apcf03 at 28 Sep 2016 05:40:36 Processing Time: 257ms