Emirates will operate a one-off Airbus A380 flight to Colombo’s Bandaranaike International Airport next month, marking the first time the world’s largest passenger aircraft has flown to Sri Lanka.
On Monday 14 August, the double-decker jet will be deployed on flight EK654 from Dubai. It will arrive in the Sri Lankan capital at 1610, staying for more than six hours before it returns to Dubai as flight EK655, departing at 2210. This will enable airport executives, trade partners and local journalists to be taken on a guided tour of the aircraft.
“Colombo has welcomed us from the day Emirates commenced daily flights from Dubai in 1986, just a year after the airline launched its operations,” said Ahmed Khoory, Emirates’ senior vice president for West Asia & the Indian Ocean. “We are honoured to work alongside the city, airport, and the Sri Lankan Civil Aviation authorities, to bring our flagship A380 to this vibrant destination.
“For BIA and for aviation enthusiasts in Sri Lanka, this will certainly be a special day and we look forward to showcasing our unique on board products in this market,” he added.
Emirates currently operates 34 weekly flights to Colombo – 27 of which return westwards to Dubai and the Maldives, and seven of which continue eastwards to Singapore and Melbourne.
The airline usually deploys its Boeing 777-300ER to Sri Lanka, but these one-off A380 flights are often used to gauge demand ahead of the potential launch of regular A380 services.