LAHORE: To minimise the impact of global travel demand trends, Emirates Airlines is likely to cut services to Pakistan as there is maintenance work on Dubai Airport’s Southern Runway, Pakistan Aviation reported.
It was further reported that due to the current economic conditions, HR shortages and the changing dynamics, the operational schedules for Emirates and other airlines are being reviewed.
As of now, the airline is serving Karachi, Lahore, Islamabad, Peshawar and Sialkot with its Boeing 777 fleet. Moreover, its codeshare partner FlyDubai operates to Faisalabad, Multan, Karachi, Quetta and Sialkot.
It was further reported by sources within the aviation industry that “It is quite likely that from the third quarter of 2019, Emirates might cut services to Multan, Sialkot and Peshawar”, adding that FlyDubai will “pick its load and serve as a feeder airline”.
The impact on flights to Pakistan includes flights from Dubai to Islamabad, which will be reduced from 11 to seven flights weekly, Dubai to Karachi flights will be reduced from 35 to 23 weekly, whereas flights from Dubai to Lahore will be reduced from 10 to nine weekly and flights to Peshawar will be reduced from five to three weekly.
Moreover, flights to Multan and Sialkot have already been cancelled, but FlyDubai continues to serve the destinations.
In addition to that, this will also have an impact to the international destinations as flights will be reduced from Dubai to London (Gatwick, Heathrow and Stansted), Madinah, Manchester, New York and direct flights to Newark are cancelled.
According to Emirates Airline President Tim Clark, “The reshuffle will result in up to 48 Emirates aircrafts not being utilized, with a 25 per cent reduction in the overall number of flights operated by the airline during the 45-day period.”
It will also allow the airline to reevaluate its operational demands vs challenges and if the Pakistani airlines will adjust their schedules to take advantage of this situation.