Emirates Airlines implements the largest project to modernize its fleet

 Emirates has launched plans and trials to fully modernize the interiors of 120 Airbus A380 and Boeing 777 aircraft, the two largest commercial aircraft models currently operating.

The implementation of this ambitious project, which includes an investment of billions of dollars to ensure “lasting excellence” for Emirates customers over the coming years, will begin next November, with the full management of the engineering team at Emirates Airlines.

Emirates aims to fully upgrade four A380s each month, over a period of more than two years. Once the 67 upgraded A380s are back in service, 53 777s will undergo the upgrade. The operation includes the installation of nearly 4,000 new seats in the Premium Economy cabin, the renovation of 728 suites in First Class, and the upgrade of more than 5,000 Business Class seats with a new design and appearance when the project is completed in April 2025.

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interior facades

In addition, the carpets for floors and stairs will be changed, and the interior facades of the cabins will be updated with new colors and design motifs, including the designs of the "Ghaf", the national tree of the United Arab Emirates.

No other airline in the world has ever undertaken a modernization of such magnitude within its own facilities, and no airline has similar plans. Therefore, Emirates engineering teams plan and test extensively to establish and simplify operations, identifying and addressing any potential obstacles in the future.

Trials began last July on the A380, with Emirates' experienced engineers taking apart each cabin piece by piece and recording every step, from removing seats and panels to screws and nuts, planning and testing each procedure and its timing. They also identified potential barriers to completing the installation of the new Premium Economy Class cabin and retrofitting the other three cabins on each aircraft in just 16 days, and documenting them for expert teams for review and approval.

As part of the modernization program, Emirates Engineering facilities will witness the establishment of new workshops dedicated to the repainting and upholstery of all business class seats, and the renewal of all aircraft side panels. The first-class suites will also be dismantled and sent to Collins Aerospace, based in Dubai World Central, to replace the leather, armrests and other parts, as well as repainting to match the new look.


During the experiments, the engineers discovered many unexpected solutions, for example, it was possible to use aircraft catering trucks easily to transport parts that will be subject to modernization from the aircraft to the workshops, as the wide doors of these trucks provide enough space for that. A multidisciplinary team meets weekly, until the launch of the modernization program in November, to review plans, address any issues and provide updates on various aspects of the project, such as procurement, staffing and training.

More space

The new Economy Class cabin, which offers luxurious seating, more legroom and superior service, is now available to Emirates customers traveling on the popular A380 routes to London, Paris and Sydney. With the modernization program moving forward, Emirates will make its new Premium Economy Class cabin experience available to more customers from the end of this year.

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