According to various sources in Dubai, the airline presented its plans to deal with the post-Covid world late last week. The voracity of the claims made were not diminished by the weak response from the Dubai government – which did not deny them, Emirates has said only that no decision has been made and if it was it would be communicated at the appropriate time .
The level of details provided, even down to who presented what at the briefings, suggest that Emirates is just trying to get its house in order. Leaks like this when such massive issues are at stake are inevitable, and these fall entirely in line with what Tim Clarke has already said. Later Monday morning (after this article was published actually), Bloomberg also expressed its confidence by publishing the reports, and it’s very rarely wrong.
The plans are said to include the permanent retirement of 46 A380’s. The aircraft have already been identified according to the source, and will probably include all of the leased aircraft.
On top of that very large numbers of staff are set to loose their jobs, with one source saying it was in excess of 30,000 people. Loosing 46 A380’s alone would require around 4,000 fewer crew.
The writing was on the wall when Sir Tim Clarke, the airlines CEO seemed to preview the demise of the A380, with his “the A380 is over” statement.
According to sources the announcement on the fleet reductions is due within two weeks, and department heads have already been briefed.
The details on which staff are to loose their jobs are said to include anyone with illness, disciplinary issues, and anyone aged over 60.
In any event the whole scenario fits within Tim Clarke’s “20-30%” reduction in the size of the airline as we enter a new world of reduced demand for air travel.