Emirates has reached an agreement with Airbus to buy 70 more plane worth over $21 billion. The deal includes an agreement that will cancel many of the carrier’s A380 orders.

Emirates’ order includes 40 Airbus 330-900 aircraft and 30 Airbus 350-900 aircraft. Deliveries will begin in 2021 and run through 2024.

The order comes amid reports that Airbus will stop producing A380s after a number of airlines cut high-profile orders.

“After many months of discussions, we have come to an agreement with Airbus and Rolls-Royce,” Shaikh Ahmed bin Saeed Al Maktoum, Chairman and Chief Executive, Emirates Airline and Group, said.

Last year, Emirates announced that it would order 36 more Airbus 380s. Yet the airline has decided to move past the plane.

“Emirates has been a staunch supporter of the A380 since its very inception. While we are disappointed to have to give up our order, and sad that the programme could not be sustained, we accept that this is the reality of the situation,” Al Maktoum said.

The A380 is loved by Emirates’ crew and passengers. The airline redefined luxury onboard its A380s, adding Shower Spas and Onboard Lounge options for business and first class passengers. 

Emirates will use Airbus 330neos to operate on regional routes. The airline will also open routes to smaller airports for its global network. Meanwhile, the Airbus 350s will boost Emirates’ long haul operation, providing added flexibility for 8- to 12-hour flights from Dubai.

Emirates’ deal has brought about the end of the era of the jumbo jet, and Airbus will focus on smaller and more fuel-efficient aircraft like the A220. This is a big blow to Airbus, as they thought that air travel would lead to a demand for bigger planes, but moving to fuel-efficient aircraft with two engines is a move that has increased the need for a rival for the Boeing 787 Dreamliner.

Featuring Image By Federico Meraviglia/Aeronatics Online

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