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Wednesday 21 June 2023

Flying with Emirates A380 in 2023 (Part 2: DXB-LHR)

 Welcome to my part 2 of my Emirates 2023 trip report!


Emirates has multiple flights to London and that city alone consists of 4 major airports, making this one of the most lucrative in Emirates's network. Currently the airline is operating 41 weekly flights to London. Amazing right? I chose to fly to London Heathrow as it is the 2nd most convenient airport to get to the city area. First is London City Airport which is not served by the airline. The other 2 London Airports are London Stansted and London Gatwick airports. After much consideration, I decided to choose the flight into London Heathrow around noon time as I could straight away check in at the hotel and also explore Dubai airport during the layover. 

Stop-over for 5 hours 25 mins 

I chose a window seat near the front of the aircraft 

Boarding was done by zone. 

I could still change the seat at the last minute. 

About Dubai Airport (June 2023) 

Dubai DXB Airport is the primary international airport of the city that is one of the world's busiest airport in terms of international passenger traffic. Unlike the DWC Airport (the secondary airport), Emirates operates more A380 and Boeing 777-300ER at this airport and is often used as a transit stop for international passengers. 

This airport consists of 2 runways (12L/30R and 12R/30L) and 3 terminals in which the terminal 3 is the largest airport terminal in the world (2023). Emirates and Flydubai are the primary users of this airport. Emirates operates at terminal 3 with concourses A,B and C under this airline while FlyDubai and regional airlines operate at terminal 2 (Concourse F) as for terminal 1, it is operated by international airlines. 

So this is how the terminal 3 layout looks like if you are flying with Emirates and stopover at Dubai for international connection. Once you arrive at the airport, you are require to undergo a security check before proceeding on to board your connecting flight at the assigned gate. 

The different types of configuration of the A380 fleet 

There are 7 different types of configuration for the A380: 

-2 Class (58 Business and 557 Economy) 

-3 Class (14 First, 76 Business and 399 Economy)
-3 Class (14 First 76 Business and 401 Economy) 
-3 Class (14 First 76 Business and 427 Economy)
-3 Class (14 First 76 Business and 429 Economy)
-3 Class (14 First 76 Business and 426 Economy)

-4 Class (14 First 76 Business 56 Premium Economy 338 Economy)

For the seat map, you can check out more on Aerolopa's website over here.

Photos of the airport 

Once I arrived at the airport, we headed towards security where we have to undergo another round of security check. That didn't take long despite quite a number of flights arriving at that time. As I had ample time, I decided to clock some steps for my Apple watch fitness. For those who are familar with Apple watches, you have the rings consisting of 3 colours. Red - (amount of calories burnt) Green- (exercise minutes) and Stand (number of times/hours you stand up or move around for the day). The terminal was quite big, I walked from one end to the other end and managed to close the rings by the time I decided to rest. 

Let's have a look at Dubai (DXB) terminal 3! 

There are not many charging outlets. 

The shops were opened at this late hour as there are many connecting passengers arriving at this time. 

The walls were well decorated at this part of the terminal. (Below)

Free WiFi is available at the airport. Just one click and you are online. 

Not the most modern terminals but it is very big. 

Look at the number of flights and mind you a good number of them are operated by A380. 

Looking at the board, my aircraft was departing from gate A13. 

For A gates, I have to take the train over. 

Once there, I did more walking. 

Nothing spectacular about the airport to be honest. What is important is the availability of the free wi-fi and seats for us to rest. I wish there are more charging outlets.

Before departure     

Unfortunately the terminal is not photography-friendly. I spotted this beautiful livery at the gate near mine. 

Once the gate is opened, you can take go through a ticket checkpoint and head downstairs to wait for the boarding call. There are toilets downstairs so you don't have to worry. Enter the gate area only if you have no plans to shop or eat. 

I did a check what aircraft I was flying on, I was stunned to see I be flying on another A380 featuring the  'Journey to the Future' livery.

This is A6-EEJ! 

Once it was time to board, we boarded the aircraft by zone. 

It is amazing to see 3 aerobridges connected to an aircraft. 

What are the odds of flying the A380 with this livery twice on a different aircraft? 

My ride: A6-EEJ (Photo: Rainer Spoddig)

Airbus A380-861 (10 years old) - 2023
Delivered: Sept 2013
Configuration: F14 C76 Y427 
Engines: GP7200
127th A380 built 
Built in Toulouse 

Flight route: DXB-LHR 

Miles: 3421 

Date of departure: 22nd May 2023
Airline: Emirates
Flight: EK29
Route: DXB-LHR
Aircraft type: Airbus A380
Registration: A6-EEJ (Journey to the future special livery)
Seat: 47A
Load: 100% in Y class 
Flight duration: 6 hours 50 mins 
Actual flight time: 6 hours 47 mins 
Gate: A13
Schedule departure: 0940 
Push back: 1008
Take off: 1020
Schedule arrival: 1425 
Touch down: 1412
Reach gate: 1439
Departure runway (DXB): 30R
Arrival runway (LHR): 09L 

My flight experience

As it is a day flight, I spent more time looking out of the window especially during take off and landing. The view out of Dubai was spectacular as I once again enjoy the quiet take off of the Airbus A380. The flight crew gave us a good update on our flight and it was to be a smooth flight for most parts of the trip. I spent most of the time watching some movies (the ones I missed out at the cinemas). For the cabin service, I find it similar with my previous flight's set of crew. Walking past them with a few of them looking elsewhere, that is the  kind of impression they give me. Of course there are a few outstanding ones, however they were working at other sections so I don't see them often. However, it was a pleasant flight, I was kept entertained by the IFE system and was pleased with the meal quality.

Economy Class photos 

I didn't take as many photos this time as the cabin interior is similar to my previous flight.

This is the older Economy Class product, I supposed they will be replaced in the near future. 

I don't find these seats comfortable especially after few hours on it. 

This was my seat (below). 

The A380 window 

I got to say the ICE system is impressive and also whatever you need to keep your time going is available. (below) 

I managed to get a peek at the amazing cockpit. 

Legroom space was adequate for me. 

It can be a challenge for the person at the window seat to lean his/her head against the wall, to rest. 

Every passenger gets a reading light and air ventilator at his/her seat.

In-Flight meals 

I chose the butter chicken meal - it was quite tasty, better than I had on my previous flight.

I chose the pizza as I was recommended to try by others. It was not bad. 

Overall I was satisfied with the meal. The catering from Dubai on this flight was definitely better than the catering from Singapore. 

Window shot photos 

The aerobridges were connected at door 1 and 2. Usually for other A380 operators, the premium classes are located at this part of the aircraft. 

How many engines do you see over here? 

Spotting an A380 from an A380. 

Can you spot the odd one out? (A380)

Time to go! I couldn't wait to depart at this point. 

Another A380 featuring this special livery.

We raced to the threshold but she won! 

We departed not long after. 

You can see how big the terminal is! 

I am glad I sat on the correct side, I was treated to this beautiful view of the airport and city. 

Off we went. I have transit at Dubai a good number of times but I haven't visited the city. One day I will!

Goodbye Dubai! 

6 hours later, I was at LHR Airport. 

My aircraft parked besides this American Boeing 777-200ER which was bound for Charlotte. 

Photos of the lavatory 

Photos of the camera view 

That's what I like this about this enteratinment system, it give you some information of the flight and different angles view from the camera. 

You can even watch your plane in action or the map while watching a movie. 

I did a check with the wifi but I couldn't connect it on my phone. 

Arrival at LHR Airport 

I headed to the Premier Inn Hotel at terminal 4. 

The impressive train on the Elizebeth line. 

This is St Katharine's Dock

My flight summary 

My rating: 

Website/mobile app: 4/5
Airport on-ground service: 3/5
In-Flight Service: 3/5
In-Flight Entertainment: 4/5
Seat Comfort: 3/5
Cabin Ambiance: 4/5 
Cabin condition: 5/5
Punctuality: 5/5
In-Flight Meal: 4/5
Cleanliness: 5/5
Overall rating: 39/50
Percentage: 78%
Verdict: Not bad! 
(Same score as my previous flight)


The older product of the airline's economy class is still competitive and in addition with the entertainment system, it gives a lot of airlines a run of their money. The airline operates only 2 aircraft types for now, the Airbus A380 and Boeing 777-300ER and it seems to be able to fill most of them. The airline does offer good airfares from time to time, giving a hard time for the local airlines at the destination this airline flies to. Most travellers are price conscious, to them, flying with a stop-over doesn't matter as long as their wallets are happy with the deal. Most would prefer to pay more for their time at the destination than on airfares. This is why the smaller airlines especially without airline partners or alliance, struggle to compete with the middle east airlines. 

So far, I am quite satisfied with both flights. Not the best flight experience but at least it got me from A to B on time, was well fed on my flights and I managed to watch some nice movies and catch up some sleep on both flights. I still have 2 more flights to go with this airline and I would be experience the newest Y clacss product on both flights, so stay tuned for the reports. 

Hope you enjoy this trip report! 

For the part 1 of my Emirates 2023 trip report, click here.
For my next trip report (Virgin Atlantic LHR-ATL), click here

Thanks for reading!

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