Emirates Makes Celebratory A380 Flight to Mauritius

United Arab Emirates (UAE) carrier Emirates Airline this week operated the first ever commercial flight of an Airbus A380 to the Indian Ocean island of Mauritius.  The Super Jumbo was used on one of the carrier’s two daily scheduled flights from Dubai on March 12, 2013 to commemorate the island’s 45th anniversary of independence.

Upon landing at the Sir Seewoosagur Ramgoolam International Airport the aircraft was met with a ceremonial water cannon salute and the VIP delegation onboard, which included Tim Clark, President of Emirates Airline, was welcomed by Sarupanand Kinnoo, acting-Director of Civil Aviation, Serge Petit, Chief Executive Officer of Airports of Mauritius and André Viljoen, Chief Executive Officer of Air Mauritius, an Emirates’ codeshare partner on the route.

“Emirates operation of the first commercial flight of an A380 to Mauritius on such a symbolic day is testament to the importance of the destination in our network," said Tim Clark.  "Our partnership with the country and Air Mauritius has been strong since we started our operations ten years ago.  As a major partner of the tourism industry, we will continue to support the island throughout our network to stimulate in-bound traffic.”

"Our flagship aircraft is proving more and more popular, figures show that over 14 million passengers have now experienced a flight on the Emirates’ A380.  Emirates remains committed to being a leader in offering our customers innovative products and services that provide them with an unsurpassed travel experience,” he added.

“Emirates operation of the first commercial flight of an A380 to Mauritius on such a symbolic day is testament to the importance of the destination in our network.  Our partnership with the country and Air Mauritius has been strong since we started our operations ten years ago.”

Tim Clark
President, Emirates Airline

After a welcoming ceremony, Mauritian VIPs, media and members of the travel industry were given a guided tour of the A380 by Emirates cabin crew, several of whom are from Mauritius.  Also joining the tour were a group of 150 young Mauritians from various regions of the island.  As the world’s largest operator of the double-decker aircraft, Emirates’ fleet of 31 A380s serves 21 destinations including: Jeddah, Bangkok, Hong Kong, Kuala Lumpur, Singapore, Amsterdam, Shanghai, Moscow, Rome, Seoul, London Heathrow, Melbourne, Munich, Beijing, Sydney, Auckland, Manchester, Tokyo, Paris, Toronto and New York.

“Today is an auspicious day for Mauritius and we are welcome the fact that Emirates has chosen today in the history of our airport to bring the first commercial flight of an A380 to Mauritius”, said Serge Petit, CEO of Airports of Mauritius.  “The A380 brings with it the opportunity to increase the number of passenger seats to the island.  This is where the significant investment in our brand new terminal and airside infrastructure as well as all our drive towards modernisation would pay dividends.”

The popular leisure destination of Mauritius is a key destination on the Emirates route map and a significant number of passengers connect at Emirates’ Dubai International Airport hub to its double daily Boeing 777-300 flights to the archipelago.  In 2012 around 350,000 passengers utilised the Emirates service in and out of Sir Seewoosagur Ramgoolam International Airport, approximately 13 per cent of the facility’s total passenger throughput. 

In the table below we highlight the top ten O&D markets from Mauritius and look how this compares with five years earlier in 2007.  Our analysis shows the overall international market to/from Mauritius has grown 16.2 per cent during this period even though traditional markets such as Germany, Italy and the UK have seen a decline in visitor numbers, likely due to the economic problems across the continent.  There has been significant growth in traffic to Madagascar and Reunion, while numbers to/from India and the UAE have grown notably, partly due to Emirates’ flights into Mauritius.

2012

2007

ESTIMATED O&D DEMAND FROM AND TO MAURITIUS (bi-directional international O&D passengers)

Rank

Destination

Estimated O&D Demand

% Traffic Share

Rank

Destination

Estimated O&D Demand

% Traffic Share

1

Reunion

549,111

21.9 %

1

Reunion

399,846

18.5 %

2

France

391,115

15.6 %

2

France

269,211

12.5 %

3

United Kingdom

251,584

10.0 %

3

United Kingdom

261,945

12.1 %

4

South Africa

248,246

9.9 %

4

South Africa

240,220

11.1 %

5

India

167,684

6.7 %

5

Germany

165,127

7.6 %

6

Germany

112,864

4.5 %

6

India

138,012

6.4 %

7

Italy

87,350

3.5 %

7

Italy

91,504

4.2 %

8

Madagascar

78,294

3.1 %

8

Madagascar

68,180

3.2 %

9

United Arab Emirates

74,575

3.0 %

9

United Arab Emirates

65,042

3.0 %

10

Switzerland

70,681

2.8 %

10

Australia

52,807

2.4 %