Emirates to use A380 in Toronto

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Middle Eastern carrier Emirates will upgauge its Toronto-Dubai service to Airbus A380 aircraft from 1 June following strong load factors and consistent forward bookings in the first year of the offering.

Dubai-based Emirates launched the city pair using Boeing 777-300ER aircraft in October 2007. The thrice-weekly route has had average load factors of above 90% during the first year of operation and consistently strong forward bookings, Emirates SVP for public, government and environmental affairs Andrew Parker previously told ATI.

Passenger capacity will increase to 489 from 360 as -300ER aircraft will be redeployed in the Emirates network however, aircraft will not be moved to one specific market, an airline spokeswoman says.

Upgauging comes as the Middle Eastern carrier has sought daily access to its only Canadian destination for a decade.

"We believe Toronto needs a daily A380 service and progressively, a second daily service with an aircraft like the 777," Emirates President Tim Clark says in a statement.

In addition to daily Toronto flights, Emirates seeks to add Calgary and Vancouver to its route map using-300ER or -200LR aircraft.

The conversation with regulators continues, with further dialogue planned over the next months, Parker says.