Emirates is the largest operator of the Airbus A380 employing it on its shortest and longest routes. Martyn Cartledge examines the widebody’s role with the Middle Eastern carrier.


Emirates is synonymous with the Airbus A380. Of the 209 super jumbos delivered at the time of writing in mid-April almost half, 94, have gone to the UAE carrier with a further 48 on order. Since its first example was delivered in 2008, Emirates has flown 65 million passengers on the double-decker.

In 2003, before the airline had received any examples of the type, Emirates’ Chairman and CEO Sheikh Ahmed bin Saeed Al Maktoum said: “A380s are the best solution for the increase in capacity, range and economy that we need to satisfy our rapid passenger growth and ever-expanding network. We are also very excited by the ability to carry more passengers in the A380 and by its outstanding economics.”

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