Emirates A380 short final at Sydney – Photo: Jacob Pfleger | AirlineReporter
EMIRATES AIRLINE FIRST CLASS REVIEW BASICS:
Airline: Emirates Airline
Aircraft: Airbus A380-800
Departed: Sydney (SYD)
Arrived: Dubai (DXB)
Stops: Non-stop flight
Class: First Class
Length: About 14 hours
Not many people I know get too excited at the prospect of a 14-hour flight that leaves at 6:00 AM. But when travelling in first class, even the 4:00 AM wake-up call is cause for excitement. I was recently fortunate enough to experience the first class product on-board Emirates’ A380 from Sydney to Dubai.
Most Emirates’ departures from Australia to Dubai are timed to leave at night; this did not appeal very much to me as when traveling first class I like to make the most of the experience, rather than just sleep though it. Luckily, Emirates had recently introduced the A380 product on their EK415 service, which departs Sydney at 6:00 AM with a 1:20 PM arrival to Dubai. This service is primarily targeted at connecting traffic onto the afternoon European services, which allow for a same-day evening arrival into Europe.
Emirates A380 first class suite; not a bad place to spend 14 hours – Photo: Jacob Pfleger | AirlineReporter
I was happy to be staying at an airport hotel, meaning that I could afford to sleep in a little longer. Check-in at Sydney was completed with minimal fuss, and I was on my way to security within five minutes of entering the terminal.
Given the Qantas Emirates partnership, first class passengers traveling on Emirates flights have access to the Qantas First Class Lounge at Sydney. Sadly, the lounge was still closed at this hour of the morning. I had to make do with the Emirates lounge – while it is still of a very high standard, it is not as good as the Qantas’ first lounge.
On board, I was welcomed by the purser and escorted to my seat. As this was my first time flying Emirates First Class, I was given a very comprehensive walk-through of all of the seat and cabin features. At this time, I also received my bvlgari amenity kit along with pajamas and slippers; all of this was very nicely presented in an Emirates-branded tote bag. This is probably the best and highest quality of in-flight amenities I have received on any carrier.
Emirate Airline’s Network Control at DXB. Image: Jason Rabinowitz.
Dubai International Airport (DXB) is a hugely complex, massive, 24-hour machine. Airplanes land, passengers are exchanged, and airplanes takeoff. What goes on behind the scenes to make this seemingly simple task work, however, is anything but simple. Earlier this year, National Geographic UK took their cameras into the depths of Dubai’s airport, giving the public a rare look at operations at the home airport of Emirates.
BONUS: Photo Tour of Emirates Airline Crew Training in Dubai
The show aired several months ago in various regions, but never made it to the Americas. What the channel guide hides from us, YouTube reveals – all ten episodes are now streaming in HD for anyone to watch. The first episode of the show starts off quite nicely, focusing on the difficulty of getting passengers with short connections across the gigantic terminal, routine mechanical difficulties, and a scramble to finish up construction of a new wing of the terminal.
A brand new Emirates Boeing 777-300ER at Paine Field.
Emirates is planning to start flights from Dubai International Airport (DXB ) to Seattle-Tacoma International Airport (SEA) on March 1, 2012. Being based in Seattle, it is going to be great seeing Emirates Boeing 777-300ER operating out of Seattle-Tacoma International Airport.
Really, this is going to be huge for Seattle. Emirates will offer a daily non-stop flight which takes only about 14-15hrs. This will be the only non-stop flight from Seattle to Dubai and even the shortest one-stop will take you about 20 hours each way. Even though I have not yet been able to fly on Emirates, I have heard their product and service are pretty darn slick, so the 15hrs should go by quite quickly.
Now is the time to find the best deals. Passengers are able to purchase tickets now, at quite a savings, to fly between March 1 to June 9, 2012. I did a quick search and it is no problem to get a round trip ticket for less than $1200.00 (with fees and taxes) during that time frame. The closest I can find on another airline is $100 more and takes 23.5 hours to get back home (it is also an American “legacy” airline and I would doubt it is as comfy as Emirates anyhow).
“Seattle has always been an important feeder market and we are pleased to develop our relationship with the city,” Nigel Page, Senior Vice President of Emirates Commercial Operations in the Americas explained to AirlineReporter.com. “Not only will the new route help promote Dubai and transit markets to America’s Pacific Northwest, it will also promote tourism, business and leisure travel to the northwest United States from around the world. We are confident this new route will contribute to growth for the City of Seattle and for Dubai.”