UAE Becoming an Aviation Hub

Here’s one we covered before in the New York Times.

So far, Emirates’ success is partly an accident of geography. Roughly four billion people live within an eight-hour flight from here.

Also, the Telegraph has an excellent article comparing the struggles of Heathrow with the rising star of Dubai International.

As a passenger experience Dubai airport is slightly overwhelming, but at the same time quite thrilling. You really feel you are at the crossroads of the world.

Finally, an article detailing the competition between Airbus and Boeing for sales to Etihad, Emirates, and Qatar Airways.

The two aerospace companies are retooling their wide-body aircraft, the Airbus A350 and Boeing 777, with an eye to the Middle East market and big-spending Gulf carriers such as Emirates Airline, Qatar Airways and Etihad Airways.

Both manufacturers are hoping to fine-tune their aircraft to be able to carry about 400 passengers, plus full loads of cargo on flights of more than 16 hours – an increasingly important requirement for Gulf carriers connecting Asia, Europe and the Americas via their hubs. These airlines have more than US$100 billion (Dh367.8bn) worth of aircraft on order to drive growth plans over the next decade and are expected to buy more jets in the coming years.

I think geography is a big factor in the success of these airlines. I think Emirates in particular has figured out they are at a geographical advantage and are building upon that aggressively. The latest news of their growth is their maintenance facility projects.

Going back to the quote from the Time’s article… that’s nearly two-thirds of the world’s population within an 8 hour flight. Just let that soak in. That’s an astounding geographical advantage, and one that I don’t think Emirates (or other GCC airlines) is going to let slip through their hands.