What is Emirates’ plan for 2005?
This year, Emirates will launch four new routes – the Seychelles, Seoul, Geneva and Hamburg.
We are also looking to expand services to North and South America, as soon as conditions permit.
We have announced plans to increase frequency of flights to Paris, Birmingham, Gatwick and Melbourne next year, and we will increase frequencies to ten other destinations. Our new aircraft orders will help us to manage the additional demand for our services. We will take delivery of a dozen new aircraft, boosting our fleet size to around 85 aircraft by year-end.
Is Emirates bullish about 2005? If yes, why?
Based on our growth projections, we anticipate another year of double digit expansion in capacity, traffic and revenues. Global economic growth, robust increase in tourist flows and greater demand for air travel from fast-developing areas such as the Indian Subcontinent and the Far East will be major drivers. Air travel growth in the first half of 2004 was very robust globally, even phenomenal in some regions, and indications are that the momentum will carry on to next year.
Thus, from our standpoint, the short-term forecast basically is healthy, though the high fuel prices have been putting pressure on our cost structure. Longer term, we have no reason to question the experts’ forecast of an average air travel annual growth of five per cent for the next 20 years.
What can passengers look forward to in the new year?
On January 2, we start services to the beautiful Seychelles. With over one hundred coral islands in the Indian Ocean, the country offers options from outdoor and water sport activities to rejuvenating spas.
Our new service to Seoul, the South Korean megalopolis, starting on May 1, will meet increasing demand for business and leisure traffic between the city, the Middle East and Europe.
Emirates’ daily services to Hamburg will start on October 30 and will help us to better support the German market, which we have been serving with our existing Frankfurt, Munich and Dusseldorf services.
Switzerland is a popular destination for travellers from the Middle East and the Indian Subcontinent. Geneva is headquarters to many international organisations, including several agencies of the United Nations. On December 1 it will become Emirates’ second Swiss destination, since services started to Zurich in 1992.
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