Emirates unveils Dubai-Dublin link
Emirates Airline has announced plans to run a new daily direct service between Dublin and Dubai.
Transport Minister Leo Varadkar said the decision by the prestigious carrier to add Ireland to its network is great news for passengers, Dublin Airport and the wider economy.
The long-haul service will start on January 9, strengthening links with the Middle East and onward connections in India, Africa, South East Asia, Australia and China.
"The airline is renowned for its excellent service and high standards," said Mr Varadkar.
"Irish holidaymakers will benefit from this direct, daily and non-stop service to Dubai.
"But the chief economic benefit to Ireland will be the new link to the extensive Emirates route network from its hub in Dubai. It will provide greater ease of access to Ireland from the emerging tourism markets in the Middle East and Asia."
Emirates, the world's sixth-largest airline, operates services to more than 114 destinations in 67 countries. Its Dubai hub in the United Arab Emirates has more than 1,000 flights per week to destinations in six continents.
The Dublin flight, an Airbus A330-200, will offer first, business and economy class travel, as well as having cargo capacity.
Declan Collier, chief executive of Dublin Airport Authority (DAA), said talks have been ongoing with Emirates for years, with new boarding gates in T2 playing a key role in convincing the airline to invest in Dublin.
The flight will depart Terminal 2 at 12.55pm, arriving in Dubai at 12.25am the following day.