Emirates Chief Wants to Fly Windowless Planes

Jun 6, 2018

This post contains references to products from one or more of our advertisers. We may receive compensation when you click on links to those products. Terms apply to the offers listed on this page. For an explanation of our Advertising Policy, visit this page.

The ultimate question, window or aisle, may soon be irrelevant for those traveling on Emirates. The Dubai-based airline was the first to introduce virtual windows on its aircraft, but the feature was reserved for its incredible new first-class suite. Now, Emirates President Sir Tim Clark is considering installing the virtual windows on every aircraft, eliminating passenger windows all together.

“The quality of the imagery is so good, it’s better than with the natural eye,” Clark told the BBC.

Emirates first class suite with virtual windows. Image by Zach Honig / The Points Guy.

The virtual windows are installed onboard Emirates’ Boeing 777-300ER in its new first-class suites situated in the middle of the aircraft. They’re the same size and shape of normal windows and use a high resolution camera and screen that makes the view near-real. TPG‘s Zach Honig said he found the windows to “offer even greater clarity” than actual windows.

Emirates first class suite with virtual windows. Image by Zach Honig / The Points Guy.

Clark wants Emirates’ aircraft to drop windows for safety and monetary reasons.

“Now you have one fuselage which has no structural weaknesses because of windows,” he said. “The aircraft are lighter, the aircraft could fly faster, they’ll burn far less fuel and fly higher.”

Although an aviation safety expert Professor Graham Braithwaite of Cranfield University said that a lack of windows could cause serious issues safety issues especially in the event of an emergency evacuation.

“Flight attendants would need to check outside the aircraft in an emergency, for example for fire, before opening a door and commencing an evacuation – and anything that needed power to do this may not be easy to get certified by an aviation safety regulator,” he added.

Windows can cause safety issues too, considering a woman was recently killed after nearly being sucked out of a window on a Southwest flight. Claustrophobia, and the fact that passengers are just plain used to regular windows, might mean airlines stray away from the cause.

H/T: the BBC

Chase Sapphire Preferred® Card

WELCOME OFFER: 80,000 Points

TPG'S BONUS VALUATION*: $1,650

CARD HIGHLIGHTS: 2X points on all travel and dining, points transferrable to over a dozen travel partners

*Bonus value is an estimated value calculated by TPG and not the card issuer. View our latest valuations here.

Apply Now
More Things to Know
  • Earn 80,000 bonus points after you spend $4,000 on purchases in the first 3 months from account opening. That's $1,000 when you redeem through Chase Ultimate Rewards®. Plus earn up to $50 in statement credits towards grocery store purchases within your first year of account opening.
  • Earn 2X points on dining including eligible delivery services, takeout and dining out and travel. Plus, earn 1 point per dollar spent on all other purchases.
  • Get 25% more value when you redeem for airfare, hotels, car rentals and cruises through Chase Ultimate Rewards®. For example, 80,000 points are worth $1,000 toward travel.
  • With Pay Yourself Back℠, your points are worth 25% more during the current offer when you redeem them for statement credits against existing purchases in select, rotating categories.
  • Get unlimited deliveries with a $0 delivery fee and reduced service fees on eligible orders over $12 for a minimum of one year with DashPass, DoorDash's subscription service. Activate by 12/31/21.
  • Count on Trip Cancellation/Interruption Insurance, Auto Rental Collision Damage Waiver, Lost Luggage Insurance and more.
  • Get up to $60 back on an eligible Peloton Digital or All-Access Membership through 12/31/2021, and get full access to their workout library through the Peloton app, including cardio, running, strength, yoga, and more. Take classes using a phone, tablet, or TV. No fitness equipment is required.
Regular APR
15.99%-22.99% Variable
Annual Fee
$95
Balance Transfer Fee
Either $5 or 5% of the amount of each transfer, whichever is greater.
Recommended Credit
Excellent/Good

Editorial Disclaimer: Opinions expressed here are the author’s alone, not those of any bank, credit card issuer, airlines or hotel chain, and have not been reviewed, approved or otherwise endorsed by any of these entities.

Disclaimer: The responses below are not provided or commissioned by the bank advertiser. Responses have not been reviewed, approved or otherwise endorsed by the bank advertiser. It is not the bank advertiser’s responsibility to ensure all posts and/or questions are answered.