January sees some big changes to Australian international flights announced by Emirates and, according to the AMEX Air Monitor 2019, will mark the beginning of a big year in air travel.
Emirates to shut down Sydney and Perth services
Dubai International Airport’s Southern Runway is set to close for maintenance between 16 April and 30 May 2019, so Emirates will shut down a quarter of its overall services during the 45-day period.
According to an airline statement: “Given the limitations around operating flights using a single runway at its hub, many Emirates flights will be cancelled, re-timed or have the operating aircraft changed in order to reduce impact on customers. This will result in up to 48 Emirates aircraft not being utilised, with a 25 per cent reduction in the overall number of flights operated by the airline during the 45-day period.”
Part of the shutdown means Emirates will suspend flights EK 418/419 between Bangkok and Sydney from 1 June 2019, and from 31 March, will suspend EK 424/425 and serve Perth with a once daily Airbus A380 service non-stop from Dubai.
“We invest in a modern and efficient aircraft fleet so we can offer industry-leading comforts to our customers, and we are agile in deploying our aircraft to destinations where it best serves customer demand,” said Emirates President Sir Tim Clark.
“The changes we are implementing to our network schedules in 2019 are in line with this approach, taking into consideration global market dynamics and operational limitations, including the maintenance work on Dubai Airport’s Southern Runway.
Air Monitor 2019 predicts Aussie air travel trends
According to American Express Global Business Travel’s (GBT) newly released Air Monitor 2019, air travel will increase across Australia, with domestic capacity across the country expected to rise by 3.6 per cent in business class and 2.3 per cent in economy class in 2019.
Expect airfares to also increase – albeit slightly – the make up to the decrease in Revenue Passenger Kilometres (RPK) that were down 1.6 per cent year-on-year in 2018.
Read more at Travel Talk.
Measles warning for Qantas passengers
Qantas passengers on Flight QF20 from Manila to Sydney are being warned to keep a look out for measles symptoms after a fellow passenger was diagnosed with the contagious disease.
NSW Health has warned passengers on the Qantas flight that landed at Sydney Airport at 6:30 am on 11 January and those who were present at the airport at that time, to be aware of symptoms such as fever, sore eyes and a cough for the next few weeks.
“If you develop symptoms, please call ahead to your GP so that you do not wait in the waiting room with other patients,” said communicable diseases director Vicky Sheppeard.
The health body also said people travelling to Southeast Asia should ensure they are fully vaccinated prior to leaving. The incident marks the sixth case of measles reported in Sydney in the past three weeks.