Dubai Airshow 2021: Emirates to retrofit 105 planes with Premium Economy class

Dubai’s flagship carrier also plans to introduce new Business Class product.


Waheed Abbas

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Published: Tue 16 Nov 2021, 9:56 AM

Emirates airline on Tuesday announced that it plans to introduce a new Business Class product, and will also retrofit its 105 wide-body aircraft with Premium Economy class to enhance the passenger experience.

Spanning 18 months, the programme will begin at the end of 2022 and will be conducted at Emirates’ Engineering Centre in Dubai.

Emirates’ Premium Economy is equipped with each seat designed to provide optimal comfort and support with 6-way adjustable headrests, calf rests and footrests. Offering a pitch of up to 40-inches, each seat is 19.5 inches wide and reclines 8 inches into a comfortable cradle position to stretch out. It also includes in-seat charging points, a wide dining table, a side cocktail table and a 13.3-inch personal seat-back screen.

As part of its retrofit program, 52 Emirates A380s and 53 Boeing 777s will be fitted with a new cabin class.

New Business Class

Dubai’s flagship carrier said it’s also considering installing a brand new Business Class product on its Boeing 777 aircraft, with customised seats in a 1-2-1 layout.

At the end of the retrofit programme, Emirates will have a total of 111 Boeing 777 and Airbus A380 aircraft offering Premium Economy seats, including the six A380s that would have been delivered to the airline with four cabin classes by December 2021.

On the Emirates Boeing 777, five rows of Economy class seats located just behind Business Class will be removed to install 24 Premium Economy seats laid out in 2-4-2 configuration. On the Emirates A380, 56 Premium Economy seats will be installed at the front of the main deck also in 2-4-2 configuration.

By end of December 2021, Emirates’ A380s with Premium Economy will be operating on the airline’s flights to Frankfurt, London Heathrow, New York JFK and Paris, the Dubai-based carrier said on Tuesday.


“Since we introduced our Premium Economy seats a year back, we have received a hugely positive response. Customers have been amazed by the quality and comfort… we are also considering a brand new Business Class product. More details will be revealed in due course," said Sir Tim Clark, president of Emirates.

“It is also a source of pride that the entire retrofit project will be conducted at our home base in Dubai. It demonstrates the strong aviation capabilities that have been built up within Emirates airline and the broader UAE ecosystem to support such a highly specialised and technical programme,” added Clark.

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