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Emirates adds many more US flights, Airbus A380 returns in March

Jan. 11, 2021
3 min read
Emirates adds many more US flights, Airbus A380 returns in March
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Up until early last year, Emirates had a superjumbo presence at New York-JFK, flying the Airbus A380 on multiple flights every day. The airline quickly scaled back its U.S. service early during the pandemic, though, including just one daily flight between New York and Dubai, with the smaller Boeing 777-300ER.

Now, the global giant is planning to ramp up its service to the United States, and has even added an A380 back to the schedule, joining the 777-300ER with a second daily flight between Dubai (DXB) and New York beginning March 28, 2021, according to data on TPG sister site ExpertFlyer.

Screenshot courtesy of ExpertFlyer.

Emirates is also scaling up operations across the country, resuming flights between Dubai and:

  • Seattle (SEA): four days a week, beginning Feb. 2
  • Dallas/Ft. Worth (DFW): three days a week, beginning March 3
  • San Francisco (SFO): four days a week, beginning March 2

The San Francisco flight will be operated by a Boeing 777-300ER, which includes a first-class cabin and 2-3-2 angle-flat seating in business class, while the Dallas and Seattle flights will have a 777-200LR, with no first-class suites, but business class in a more spacious 2-2-2 arrangement.

Emirates' 777-200LR offers a more spacious business-class cabin than the 777-300ER. (Photo by Zach Honig/The Points Guy)

These flights join current service to Boston (BOS), Chicago (ORD), Houston (IAH), Los Angeles (LAX) and Washington, D.C. (IAD), which will all maintain their current schedules, with the exception of LAX, which will move from five days per week to daily service beginning Feb. 1, operated by a Boeing 777-300ER.

As for the New York route, while the Boeing 777-300ER offers a superior first-class suite — affectionately named the Emirates "Game Changer" — the Airbus A380 has a whopping 14 suites in first class, compared with just six on the newer 777, opening up many more opportunities to book premium-cabin awards.

Screenshot courtesy of Alaska Airlines.

Unfortunately for U.S. travelers, March 27 is the last day you'll find the airline's latest suite flying to New York, identified by a seat map with just six first-class suites, arranged in a 1-1-1 configuration:

Screenshot courtesy of ExpertFlyer.

Beginning on March 28, Emirates flight 202 will shift from the 777-300ER with the newer suite to the A380, which sports a large cabin with a 1-2-1 layout in first class:

Screenshot courtesy of ExpertFlyer.

For business-class flyers, the A380 is the much better pick, with a far more spacious 1-2-1 layout. That larger plane also offers more amenities, including two first-class showers and a staffed bar in business class, which is accessible to all business and first-class passengers onboard.

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Apply for American Express® Gold Card
at American Express's secure site
Terms & restrictions apply. See rates & fees
Best for the well-traveled foodie
TPG Editor‘s Rating
Card Rating is based on the opinion of TPG‘s editors and is not influenced by the card issuer.
4 / 5
Go to review

Rewards Rate

4XEarn 4X Membership Rewards® Points at Restaurants, plus takeout and delivery in the U.S.
4XEarn 4X Membership Rewards® points at U.S. supermarkets (on up to $25,000 per calendar year in purchases, then 1X).
3XEarn 3X Membership Rewards® points on flights booked directly with airlines or on amextravel.com.
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    Earn 60,000 Membership Rewards® points after you spend $4,000 on eligible purchases with your new Card within the first 6 months of Card Membership.

    60,000 bonus points
  • Annual Fee

    $250
  • Recommended Credit
    Credit ranges are a variation of FICO© Score 8, one of many types of credit scores lenders may use when considering your credit card application.

    670-850
    Excellent/Good

Why We Chose It

There's a lot to love about the Amex Gold card. It's been a fan favorite during the pandemic because of its fantastic rewards rate on restaurants (that includes takeout and delivery in the U.S.!) and U.S. supermarkets. If you're hitting the skies soon, you'll also earn bonus points on travel. Paired with up to $120 in Uber Cash (for U.S. Uber rides or Uber Eats orders) and up to $120 in annual dining statement credits at eligible partners, there's no reason that the foodie shouldn't add this card to their wallet. Enrollment required.

Pros

  • 4x on dining at restaurants and U.S. supermarkets (on the first $25,000 in purchases per calendar year; then 1x)
  • 3x on flights booked directly with the airline or with Amex Travel
  • Welcome bonus of 60,000 points after spending $4,000 in the first six months

Cons

  • Weak on travel outside of flights and everyday spending bonus categories
  • Not as useful for those living outside the U.S.
  • Some may have trouble using Uber/food credits
  • Few travel perks and protections
  • Earn 60,000 Membership Rewards® points after you spend $4,000 on eligible purchases with your new Card within the first 6 months of Card Membership.
  • Earn 4X Membership Rewards® Points at Restaurants, plus takeout and delivery in the U.S., and earn 4X Membership Rewards® points at U.S. supermarkets (on up to $25,000 per calendar year in purchases, then 1X).
  • Earn 3X Membership Rewards® points on flights booked directly with airlines or on amextravel.com.
  • $120 Uber Cash on Gold: Add your Gold Card to your Uber account and each month automatically get $10 in Uber Cash for Uber Eats orders or Uber rides in the U.S., totaling up to $120 per year.
  • $120 Dining Credit: Satisfy your cravings and earn up to $10 in statement credits monthly when you pay with the American Express® Gold Card at Grubhub, The Cheesecake Factory, Goldbelly, Wine.com, Milk Bar and select Shake Shack locations. Enrollment required.
  • Choose the color that suits your style. Gold or Rose Gold.
  • No Foreign Transaction Fees.
  • Annual Fee is $250.
  • Terms Apply.
  • See Rates & Fees