Emirates will launch a premium economy class on its aircraft from 2020, according to its President Tim Clark, which could help the carrier attract more higher spending travellers. Also, this move could increase the pressure on the main rival Gulf airlines Qatar Airways and Etihad Airways.

The premium economy class will cost more than economy class tickets, but less than business class. It will be available on the Airbus A380s that Emirates ordered this year, of which the first six will be delivered in 2020.

Dubai-based Emirates bought 20 A380s in January and has purchasing options for an additional 16 which it has said it would buy.

“We will be installing premium economy into those and it will be an Emirates premium economy, so it will be special,” Clark said in the podcast released this month.

Premium economy often includes more legroom and other benefits at a higher cost compared to the standard economy class fare but is cheaper than business class or first class tickets.

Emirates has considered adding premium economy since at least 2016 as lower oil prices dented Middle East travel demand, and the product could woo price-sensitive corporate travellers.



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