Emirates’ inaugural Flight 247 made its first landing at Galeao-Antonio Carlos Jobim International Airport in Rio de Janeiro, where it was initiated by a traditional water cannon salute.
The flight, operated by Argentine Captain Marcos Medina, then departed for its first onwards connection to Buenos Aires, where government and airport officials led by Enrique Meyer, the Argentinean Minister of Tourism, welcomed the Emirates VIP delegation headed by Thierry Antinori, Executive Vice President - Passenger Sales Worldwide.
Other members of the VIP delegation aboard the flight included the Argentinean Ambassador to the UAE, Ruben E. Caro; UAE Ambassador Mohammed Eissa Al Zaabi; Mr Abdulla Ali Al Saboosi, Director, Department of American and Pacific Affairs, UAE Ministry of Foreign Affairs; Adnan Kazim, Divisional Senior Vice President, Planning and Research and Nigel Page, Senior Vice President, Commercial Operations, the Americas.
This new linked service to two of the most economically vibrant cities in South America will not only boost trade ties with the UAE, but will also introduce travellers to Emirates' route network spanning points across the globe," said Thierry Antinori, Executive Vice President - Passenger Sales Worldwide.
"Emirates will offer customers in Brazil and Argentina the most efficient and comfortable route to the Middle and Far East, including the airline's four destinations in China and two gateways in Japan, which are key trading partners for both countries," added Mr. Antinori.
The Dubai-Rio de Janeiro-Buenos Aires flight is operated by a Boeing 777-300ER aircraft offering eight First Class Private Suites, 42 lie-flat beds in Business Class and 304 seats in Economy Class.
EK 247 leaves Dubai daily at 0710hrs and arrives at Rios Antonio Carlos Jobim International Airport at 1537hrs. It departs Rio at 1723hrs, arriving at Buenos Aires Ministro Pistarini International Airport (Ezeiza) at 1930hrs. From Buenos Aires, EK 248 departs at 2130hrs, arriving in Rio at 0123hrs the following day. The aircraft will depart Rio at 0310hours, arriving in Dubai at 2250hrs.
Emirates has a fleet of 168 aircraft and is the world's largest Airbus A380 and Boeing 777 operator. With an order for 50 new Boeing 777-300ER aircraft placed at the Dubai Airshow in November, Emirates now has 237 aircraft on order, worth over US$84 billion at list prices.
Emirates now flies to 118 destinations in 69 countries. Over the next two months, the airline will launch a further five destinations: Dublin, Lusaka, Harare, Seattle and Dallas.