Emirates will ditch its daily flights between Melbourne and Kuala Lumpur later this year to add another non-stop service between the Victorian capital and the airline’s home hub of Dubai.
From October 31 2016, EK409 – the current Melbourne-KL-Dubai flight – becomes a direct Melbourne-Dubai service, while EK408 on the return from Dubai adopts the same, an Emirates spokesperson has confirmed.
What’s more, flying without the Malaysian detour allows Emirates to make the flight times more ‘frequent flyer friendly’, moving the Melbourne departure from 3:35am to 6am and the arrival home from the return flight from 2:05am to 11:20pm.
Touch-down and take-off times in Dubai remain relatively unchanged, allowing travellers to easily connect between Australia and major destinations across Europe, the Middle East and Africa.
Using a Boeing 777-300ER aircraft, Emirates continues to offer eight first class seats up the very front, stretching to a comfortable 201cm with proper bedding, pyjamas and slippers provided:
Business class, on the other hand, sees angled-flat beds in a 2-3-2 layout...
... except for a small number of the airline’s newest jets which will provide fully-flat beds from November, but in the same seven-across configuration:
Emirates has faced increasing competition on its Melbourne-Kuala Lumpur and Melbourne-Middle East/Europe routes with Malaysia Airlines launching all-new, fully-flat business class seats on its own Melbourne-Kuala Lumpur route, flying twice-daily by late September 2016:
AusBT review: Malaysia Airlines’ new Airbus A330 business class
Etihad Airways has also upgraded one of its double-daily flights between Melbourne and Abu Dhabi from a Boeing 777 to an Airbus A380 – offering business class travellers fully-flat beds in addition to its stellar First Class Apartments and The Residence VIP suite for high flyers…
… along with opening a new Etihad Airways lounge at Melbourne Airport just last month:
Emirates’ other Australia-Asia-Dubai flights remain on sale, with the exception of Brisbane-Singapore-Dubai which is also running without the Singapore stopover until late September due to night runway works at Brisbane Airport.
Emirates continues to offer a separate non-stop Melbourne-Dubai service aboard its Airbus A380, a Melbourne-Singapore-Dubai flight also on the superjumbo and a codeshare option on Qantas' own Airbus A380.
Also read: Emirates opens new Melbourne Airport lounge
Follow Australian Business Traveller on Twitter: we're @AusBT