Emirates today celebrates its first year of operation in Dublin with the news that it has made over 220,000 passenger connections on the Dublin to Dubai route. One of the world’s fastest growing airlines has also carried over 10,000 tonnes of cargo into and out of Ireland.
Shipments from Ireland were carried primarily to Hong Kong, Singapore, Saudi Arabia, India, New Zealand and Australia as well as the UAE and, within just 12 months, Emirates SkyCargo was ranked the number two airline for cargo ex Ireland, with a market share of 20%, according to IATA.
Emirates carried a wide range of commodities, including a dress from Irish American movie star Grace Kelly for exhibition in Melbourne; Irish potatoes to Dubai; live crabs and shellfish to China; Botox to Australia and India, and family pets to and from Australia and New Zealand.
Taking flight from Dublin on 9th January 2012, Emirates’ daily service between Dublin and Dubai began onboard a 237-seater Airbus 330, with a 15 tonne cargo load capacity. The early success of the route led to the upgrade of the aircraft and on 1st May, some two months earlier than anticipated, a state-of-the-art B777-300ER added 52% additional passenger capacity and an extra 10 tonnes of cargo load to Emirates’ 119th route.
Popular destinations for customers from Ireland include Australia, New Zealand, South Africa, India, China, Thailand and Phuket, which joined the Emirates network in December.
Two major sponsorships were announced in 2012, complementing both Emirates’ strong golf sponsorship portfolio and its reputation for award-winning cuisine. 2013 sees Emirates entering year two of its three-year sponsorship of the Irish Open, with some of the world’s best golfers expected at Carton House for four days of play in June 2013. RTE’s MasterChef welcomed Emirates’ President, Tim Clark, who joined Ireland’s leading Michelin Star chefs at the judges’ table, for the airline’s second sponsorship in Ireland.
The success of the Irish route was marked in style when Dublin was selected as the theme for the 2012 Emirates Birdcage Marquee at the Melbourne Cup. Emirates introduced its one-stop flights from Dublin to Melbourne in November, making it easier than ever before to travel to the famous race series, which attracts visitors from all over the world.
Reasons for Success
Margaret Shannon, Country Manager for Emirates in Ireland, said: “Emirates always recognised the huge potential of the Irish market, but we have been overwhelmed by the positive response and early success of the route, both of which are attributable to a number of factors.
“Firstly, Emirates has helped make connecting to some really exciting destinations that bit easier, with just one stop in Dubai and over 120 points from which to choose.
“We offer really generous baggage allowances and, for golfers, Emirates will carry clubs and shoe bags free of charge. Customers can enjoy over 1,200 programmes of entertainment, music and communications on ice, Emirates’ inflight entertainment system, featuring newly enhanced wide personal TV screens. Award-winning cuisine, onboard toys for children, highly trained, multi-lingual staff together with an outstanding onboard service all ensure that the Emirates experience is an unforgettable one.”
Emirates Skywards rewards programme offers a range of exclusive benefits to customers and SMEs in Ireland can now avail of Business Rewards, a programme that rewards not only the passenger but also the business making the booking.
Customers travelling from Ireland can now also benefit from Concourse A, the world’s only purpose-built A380 concourse at Dubai International Airport. Concourse A comprises 528,000 sq m spread across 11 floors, with two hotels, fine dining options, a Timeless Spa and the world’s largest First Class and Business Class lounges.
Emirates employs 25 people in Ireland, between its public reservations office and corporate hub on Hume Street, Dublin 2, and Dublin Airport. With over 320 Irish nationals worldwide, the airline will host its next series of recruitment days around Ireland in January and February this year, to help fulfil its growing cabin crew requirements.
“2012 was a remarkable year for Emirates in Ireland and we are looking forward to some exciting announcements, new destinations and further growth in 2013,” concluded Margaret Shannon.