Emirates has signed an agreement to purchase an additional 36 A380s.

The memorandum of understanding (MoU) is to acquire up to 36 more A380 aircraft: 20 A380s and an option for 16 more, with deliveries to start in 2020. The order is valued at US$16 billion at latest list prices.

The delay in the order had caused much speculation that the A380 programme would be in difficulty. Emirates has ordered many more of the aircraft than any other carrier, and orders have slowed in recent years.

In response, Airbus has tried to rally support for the aircraft, which is widely liked among passengers

Airbus rallies passenger support for A380

Following delivery of its first A380 in July 2008, Emirates took its 100th A380 on November 3, 2017, in Hamburg.

Sheikh Ahmed said: “We’ve made no secret of the fact that the A380 has been a success for Emirates. Our customers love it, and we’ve been able to deploy it on different missions across our network, giving us flexibility in terms of range and passenger mix.

“Some of the new A380s we’ve just ordered will be used as fleet replacements. This order will provide stability to the A380 production line. We will continue to work closely with Airbus to further enhance the aircraft and on-board product, so as to offer our passengers the best possible experience. The beauty of this aircraft is that the technology and real estate on board gives us plenty of room to do something different with the interiors.”

“I would like to thank Emirates, HH Sheikh Ahmed, Tim Clark and Adel Al-Redha for their continued support of the A380,” said John Leahy, chief operating officer, customers, Airbus Commercial Aircraft. “This aircraft has contributed enormously to Emirates’ growth and success since 2008 and we are delighted that it will continue to do so. This new order underscores Airbus’ commitment to produce the A380 at least for another ten years. I’m personally convinced more orders will follow Emirates’ example and that this great aircraft will be built well into the 2030s.”

The A380 is the world’s largest aircraft and Emirates says that more than 200 million passengers have flown on one. Every two minutes an A380 either takes off or lands at one of the 240 airports around the world. To date, 222 A380s have been delivered to 13 Airlines.

Business Traveller was on the inaugural A380 flight with Emirates. Read our review here.

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