ORLANDO, FL. – Today amidst a setting of 2500 red roses and pristine white linens, Central Florida community leaders welcomed in a new era in air travel, as an Emirates Airbus A-380 launched daily air service from Dubai to Orlando International Airport (MCO). Onboard the inaugural flight was a VIP delegation, a host of international media and passengers from 29 different countries.
The world’s largest passenger plane received a water salute as it arrived, opening the door for the first time to business and leisure travel between Orlando and the Middle East.
“Emirates is a premier airline and this is a significant new air service route for Orlando International as it opens the gateway to Asia, Africa, the Middle East and even Australia and the Great Barrier Reef,” said Frank Kruppenbacher, Chairman of the Greater Orlando Aviation Authority. “The benefits of this new daily service will be measured both financially and culturally. The $100 million annual economic impact to Central Florida will be coupled with the potential to connect to diverse cultures of the world.”
“Emirates’ nonstop service to Dubai opens a new world of opportunity for Orlando to pursue tourism and business exchanges with the Middle East, Africa and Asia,” said Orlando Mayor Buddy Dyer. “Business and leisure tourism is critical to Central Florida’s economy and this new direct service will make it easier for travelers to get to and from Orlando, creating new jobs and opportunities for our residents.”
Emirates’ daily flight EK220, on a Boeing 777-200 will depart Orlando International Airport at 2:20 p.m. and arrive into Dubai International Terminal 3 at 12:30 p.m. the following day, with a flying time of 14 hours and 10 minutes. The return flight, EK219, will depart Dubai at 3:50 a.m. local time and arrive in Orlando at 11:40 a.m., a flying time of 15 hours and 50 minutes.
Record passenger growth continues at Orlando International Airport. For the month of July, the latest reported month, traffic was up 8.2 percent compared to 2014. Record numbers of international passengers fueled the growth. International volume increased 19.5 percent in July when compared to the same month of the previous year.
The international growth is expected to continue through September with the arrival of Emirates daily service.
Basic MCO Information:
Orlando International Airport (MCO), serves nearly 37 million annual passengers, of which 12.5 percent are international. MCO is the second busiest airport in Florida and has approximately 18,000 badged employees and generates $31 billion in direct and indirect revenue for the regional economy. In its ongoing efforts to value and delight its customers, Orlando International Airport has embarked on a series of Capital Improvements valued at over $1.3 billion and has approved designing a new South Terminal project all aimed at enhancing The Orlando Experience.®