Last month we reported that Emirates was bringing back the A380 to its Dubai-Amsterdam route.
Now it appears the airline was overly optimistic. Just a fortnight after launch Emirates has changed its mind.
The Dubai-based airline has swapped the A380 for a B777 with fewer seats.
Why? Simply because many travellers are not prepared to fly long-haul at the present time (unless their journeys are really essential) because many destinations are imposing restrictions of one sort or another.
Emirates told Luchtvaartniews.nl that the aircraft swap had been for “commercial reasons”.
Notes Luchtvaartnieuws “The tightened travel restrictions may have contributed to a lack of occupancy. Anyone flying to [or through] Dubai has to take a Covid-19 test before departure”.
Emirates is a sixth-freedom airline. It therefore relies on transit passengers to fill its planes.
So telling transit customers they must spend time and money in acquiring a negative Covid-19 test may have been a dissuading factor.
It means potential passengers who were intending to transit Dubai may now be seeking direct or non-stop options.
In addition some Emirates’ destinations popular with Europeans, like those in South East Asia or Australasia, either continue to impose restrictions or have banned foreign visitors entirely.