Emirates

Emirates is an airline based in Dubai, United Arab Emirates. The airline is a subsidiary of The Emirates Group, which is wholly owned by the government of Dubai's Investment Corporation of Dubai. It is the largest airline in the Middle East, operating over 3,600 flights per week from its hub at Dubai International Airport, to more than 140 cities in 81 countries across six continents. Cargo activities are undertaken by Emirates SkyCargo.

An Emirates A380-800 (A6-EUE) taking off from New York JFK Airport.
Emirates is the world's fourth largest airline by scheduled revenue passenger-kilometers flown, the fourth-largest in terms of international passengers carried, and the second-largest in terms of freight tonne kilometers flown. Emirates had the longest non-stop commercial flight from Dubai to Auckland until it was surpassed by Qatar Airways flying from Doha to Auckland.

During the mid-1980s, Gulf Air began to cut back its services to Dubai. As a result, Emirates was conceived in March 1985 with backing from Dubai's royal family, with Pakistan International Airlines providing two of the airline's first aircraft on wet-lease. With $10 million in start-up capital it was required to operate independently of government subsidy. Pakistan International Airlines provided training facilities to Emirates' cabin crew in its academy. The airline was headed by Ahmed bin Saeed Al Maktoum, the airline's present chairman. In the years following its founding, the airline expanded both its fleet and its destinations. In October 2008, Emirates moved all operations at Dubai International Airport to Terminal 3.

Emirates operates a mixed fleet of Airbus and Boeing wide-body aircraft and is one of the few airlines to operate an all-wide-body aircraft fleet. As of November 2017, Emirates is the largest Airbus A380 operator with 100 planes in service and a further 42 in orders. Since their introduction, the Airbus A380 has become an integral part of Emirates fleet, especially on long-haul high-traffic routes. Emirates is also the world's largest Boeing 777 operator with over 130 planes in service.

Emirates operates over 3,000 flights every week across its network of over 140 destinations in over 70 countries across six continents from its hub in Dubai. Several new destinations are added each year.

Emirates is not a member of any of the three global airline alliances – Oneworld, SkyTeam or Star Alliance. In 2000 the airline briefly considered joining the Star Alliance, but opted to remain independent. The reasoning for this was later revealed by senior vice-president of the airline's commercial operations worldwide that, "Your ability to react in the marketplace is hindered because you need a consensus from your alliance partners".

Emirates Economy class offers a 79–81-centimetre-long (31–32 in) seat pitch on Airbus aircraft and 86 cm (34 in) on Boeing aircraft and standard seat width (except on the Boeing 777 fleet). Emirates has ten seats per row on its Boeing 777 fleet. The seat features adjustable headrests, a 1500 channel ICE In-Flight-Entertainment and in-seat laptop power-outlets on newer aircraft and laptop recharging facilities in galleys in older aircraft. There is additional recline on A380 Economy class seats.

The cabin lighting on the A380 and newer 777 aircraft is fully provided by LED mood lighting. During night, when cabin lighting is off, there are a few fainter white LEDs with two different brightnesses in the ceiling looking like a starry sky and depicting real constellations such as the Big Dipper and Little Dipper and many others.

Emirates Skywards is the frequent-flyer program of Emirates launched in the year 2000. The program had over 16 million members as of 2016.The program uses two separate points systems – Skywards Miles as the currency that can be redeemed for benefits, and Tier Miles as the metric that determines a member’s tier status.

There are four tiers – Blue, Silver, Gold and Platinum. Once any customer registers, he or she becomes a Blue member. This registration is free of any charges. Silver tier requires 25,000 Tier Miles, Gold tier requires 50,000 Tier Miles and Platinum tier requires 150,000 Tier Miles for qualification respectively.

Emirates Skywards has partners across airlines, banks, hotels, car rentals and retail/lifestyle verticals.

As of 2016 Emirates has frequent-flyer partnerships with: Alaska Airlines, easyJet, Japan Airlines, Jet Airways, JetBlue, Jetstar, Korean Air, Malaysia Airlines, Qantas, S7 Airlines, South African Airways, TAP Portugal, Virgin America, Air Mauritius and GOL.

Emirates Skywards has partnered with Starwood Preferred Guest (also known as SPG, the loyalty program of Starwood Hotels and Resorts) to bring its members Your World Rewards. This allows Emirates Skywards members to earn both Skywards Miles and Starpoints (the loyalty currency for SPG program) when they either fly with Emirates to over 150 destinations or stay at any of SPG’s 1,200 Starwood Hotels and Resorts.

Another noteworthy partnership is Emirates Skywards partnership with Dubai Duty Free (DDF) which was launched in 2016. This partnership allows members to spend their Skywards Miles at participating Dubai Duty Free outlets when they travel through Dubai airports. Members can redeem their Skywards Miles for duty-free products at Dubai International airport and Al Maktoum International at Dubai South. Redemptions start from 4,500 Skywards Miles (worth AED 100), and members can instantly redeem Skywards Miles at the checkout. Each additional Dirham (AED) is equivalent to 45 Skywards Miles, and there is no upper limit to the number of Skywards Miles that can be spent.

From 28 August 2016, Emirates Skywards enabled its members to use Miles or a combination of Cash+Miles (C+M) to pay for an EK published fare as a form of payment.

This benefit allows members to redeem a minimum of 2000 Skywards Miles and a maximum of total amount of base fare in Skywards Miles. Cash+Miles is used as a form of payment for the base fare only and excludes taxes and carrier imposed charges. This benefit is available on Emirates flights only and not available on any other airlines with which Emirates has a codeshare agreement.

Cash+Miles offers Emirates Skywards members more choice and flexibility when it comes to spending their Skywards Miles. This is available in all classes and is applicable to all fare types.

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