When it comes to Airbus A380 operators, there are many airlines. Then there is Emirates, the outlier with over 100 in its fleet. But even Emirates is mulling the grounding of its A380s.
Meanwhile, Emirates operates 115 A380s with eight more on order, serving as the backbone of its fleet. Already, due to depressed COVID-19 demand, Emirates has grounded 20 A380s. It is also seeking to delay delivery of its final eight aircraft.
But Bloomberg reports Emirates is considering a wider grounding–potentially even a total grounding–of its A380 as demand continues to plummet.
While the United Arab Emirates is now closed to foreign visitors and locals cannot even leave, Dubai as a global gateway hub remains open for business. Emirates is no different than other airlines in recording depressed demands and planning deeper route cuts. As Asia begins to re-open, much of the rest of the world is shutting down.
Emirates also operates a fleet of 155 Boeing 777s, which would still provide sufficient capacity at a lower operating cost for what could still be an extensive network of routes.
For Emirates to even consider the grounding of its A380 fleet demonstrates what a monumental shift in air traffic we are experiencing now. Thus far, Emirates has refused to comment…but so did other airlines before it happened.
What would Emirates be without its A380s?