Emirates’ New Dubai-Miami-Bogota Route: Does It Make Sense?

Currently, Emirates arrives in Miami at 11:00. To ensure it arrives back in Dubai during the peak inbound arrival bank from North America, it leaves at 21:10, meaning over 10 hours on the ground doing nothing.

Extending the service to Colombia is a relatively cheap thing to do, especially versus routing via Europe. It considers flying to Colombia more worthwhile than remaining on the ground for so long.

The schedule will significantly differ when Emirates’ first passenger flight to Bogotá leaves on June 3. It will be as follows, with all times local. Arriving back in Dubai at 23:00 is similar to some other North American routes, e.g., New York JFK (via Milan), Newark (via Athens), and Mexico City (via Barcelona).

  • Dubai-Miami: EK213, 02:15-10:05
  • Miami-Bogota: EK213, 12:35-15:25
  • Bogota-Miami: EK214, 17:25-22:15
  • Miami-Dubai: EK214, 00:45-23:00

It will have fifth freedom rights

Emirates will benefit from two things:

  • Fifth freedom traffic rights, with booking data showing South Florida-Bogota had 640,000 roundtrip passengers in 2023 (1,753 daily). It can tap into this vast market.
  • Cargo, with 777-300ERs being renowned for very high belly hold capacity. It will supplement its dedicated freighter service to Bogota.

According to booking data, more passengers flew between Bogotá and Dubai last year than to any other destination in the Middle East or, for that matter, Asia or Africa. About 18,000 people did so (49 daily), and Emirates will provide another option for them.

Excluding Dubai, Bogotá had about 102,000 roundtrip passengers to/from Africa, Asia, and the Middle East last year (279 daily), with East Asia especially important.

For those starting/ending in Dubai or routing XXX-Dubai-Miami-Bogota or vice versa, stopping in Miami will be a big hassle, especially with a family. After all, they will need to have a visa for the US (adding $ to their trip), and they’ll have to do the following in each direction:

  • Disembark the aircraft in Miami.
  • Clear immigration (can be time-consuming in the US, especially in Miami).
  • Retrieve their baggage and go to customs.
  • Queue to recheck their luggage.
  • Go through immigration and security.
  • Board again.

Does it make sense?

Extending the route to Colombia will be great for fifth freedom passengers and cargo. It will be inconvenient and a hassle for everyone else, especially with other options.

If Emirates were serious about the Colombian capital, flying via Europe would make more sense. A source tells me that fifth freedoms are available to Bogotá via various European airports, including Rome Fiumicino, Milan Malpensa, Zurich, Amsterdam, Copenhagen, and Manchester.

It somewhat misses the point. Miami-Bogota will be served to do something about the long ground time in Florida and revolve around point-to-point passengers and belly cargo, with transit passengers on top. It might, therefore, be a relatively low-risk endeavor.


Simple Flying

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