Is it another blow to Kuala Lumpur as a major international hub. News came from Dubai-based Emirates Airlines that the carrier will reshape its Australian connections from October 30, 2016- the start of IATA winter season. The carrier announced to convert its Dubai-Melbourne flight into a non-stop service, terminating its stop-over in… Kuala Lumpur. From October 30, the daily frequency EK408/EK409 will then overpass the Malaysian capital.
Emirates explains that passengers travelling to Melbourne will then save approximately two hours and a half in travel time in each direction. The change to these services will also provide passengers with improved one-stop connectivity to more than 150 destinations on the carrier’s network.
The airline continues to re-orientate its network with its Australian partner Qantas. Together, both carriers operate 91 flights per week from Dubai to and from Brisbane, Perth, Melbourne, Adelaide and Sydney. One of the three frequencies to Melbourne will still be served via Singapore in Southeast Asia.
Emirates also confirms that it will continue to serve Kuala Lumpur directly from Dubai. The carrier operates three daily frequencies, two of which operate on Emirates Boeing B777-300ER and one an Airbus A380.
Emirates is currently working with travel agents and tour operators regarding alternative travel plans for passengers booked for travel to Kuala Lumpur on the EK408 or EK409 services after 30 October 2016.
In Southeast Asia, Emirates serves 12 cities -however Hanoi and Phnom Penh are only served with freighter- representing 788 frequencies (770 without Hanoi and Phnom Penh), representing a total of 307,000 seats per month (Base Flightmapsanalytics 06/16). Emirates will add a new daily flight to Hanoi via Yangon in Myanmar starting August 3. A Boeing 777-300ER aircraft in a three-class configuration will be used on the new route.
Kuala Lumpur is the third largest ASEAN destination in terms of seat availability behind Bangkok and Singapore. Emirates offers currently from and to the Malaysian capital over 48,500 seats per month.