Emirates is Flying Its New First Class to…London Stansted?!

Last month, Emirates unveiled its brand new First Class product for the Boeing 777-300ER. The new product features a fully enclosed suite with floor-to-ceiling doors, a Mercedes-Benz-inspired design, virtual windows, even bigger TV screens, Bulgari and Byredo amenities, as well as moisturizing pajamas. Emirates began flying the aircraft between Dubai and Geneva (GVA) and Brussels (BRU) on December 1, 2017.

New First Class on Emirates B777-300ER. Source: Emirates

New First Class on Emirates B777-300ER. Source: Emirates

It looks like Emirates has just announced a new route that will be serviced by its new 777-300ER, featuring the new First Class cabin. And that destination is…London Stansted (STN). The new route will be flying daily starting June 8, 2018. Times as follow:

  • Dubai (DXB) to London (STN): EK 33 – 0930/1410
  • London (STN) to Dubai (DXB): EK 34 – 2110/0705

Some say London Stansted is the London’s “most underused airport,” one that is dominated by low cost carriers like Ryanair, Eurowings, and easyJet. It’s located in Northeast London, and about 30 miles south of Cambridge. While there may be considerable cost for Emirates to expand to a new airport (since they won’t get economies of scale there), I actually think this is a pretty genius move. Landing slots in Heathrow are hard to come by, so expanding to the airport help Emirates expand their presence in London without paying bidding for pricey slots. London has a great origin-destination market; diversifying their service to Stansted can also help Emirates capture traffic from Northeast London, as well as additional traffic from Cambridge.

Additionally, Stansted is only a train ride from London’s Liverpool station, so it’s not a terrible airport to fly into even if you’re headed to central London—especially if you’re hoping to avoid the Heathrow madhouse. For passengers in First and Business Class, Emirates will presumably also be offering a Chauffeur drive, which they currently do in both Heathrow (LHR) and Gatwick (LGW). With a free chauffeured ride to a 70-mile radius, an arguably better First and Business Class product, those that typically fly in premium cabins may have an incentive to fly to Stansted instead.

Stansted airport. Source: Emirates

Emirates currently has 6 daily flights to Heathrow (LHR) and 3 daily flights to Gatwick (LGW). When this new route launch in June 2018, Emirates will offer a total of 10 daily flights between Dubai and London.

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