Dubai: Emirates on Tuesday said it will hire 2,000 more cabin crew to support its growth and operations this year.
The Dubai-based international airline has added 14 aircraft to its fleet since March last year, raising the number from 131 to 145,.
Emirates will showcase its success at the International Travel Bourse (ITB) that begins today in the German capital Berlin.
"Around 660 cabin crew and more than 60 pilots have been recruited by the carrier since March 2009. It is expected that a further 2,000 cabin crew will be hired this year," the airline yesterday said in a statement.
The airline also said it has invested more than Dh266 million in airport lounges.
More aircraft, more flights, new lounges and new recruits — these are just some of the developments Emirates will share with the world's largest travel trade show this week in Berlin.
Going into ITB 2010, compared to ITB in March 2009, Emirates' fleet of modern aircraft has grown from 131 to 145, and the number of A380s received has doubled from four to eight.
Two new destinations are up and running: Durban and Luanda, while Tokyo, Amsterdam, Prague, Madrid and Dakar will start this year.
From 981 departures per week in March 2009, the airline is now despatching 1,107 passenger flights per week out of Dubai, supporting the new routes and additional frequencies on existing routes such as Johannesburg, Athens, Rome, Amman, Male, Trivandrum, Bangkok, Kuala Lumpur and Sydney.
Overall seat capacity has risen by around 16 per cent.
Tim Clark, president, said: "We are looking forward to supporting ITB again this year and are pleased to be able to report so many new developments. These continue to be testing times, making our fresh initiatives and ongoing growth even more noteworthy."
In the past 12 months, premium passengers have been granted more retreats to relax, shower and dine ahead of their flights. Six Emirates lounges have opened in Beijing, Mumbai, Johannesburg, Duesseldorf, Hamburg and Manchester. Lounge investment to date is cruising above Dh266 million ($72 million).
Shortly before ITB 2009, Emirates reported that its in-flight mobile phone service had clocked up its 100,000th user. That figure has now skyrocketed to more than 1.7 million.
A total of 69 aircraft are now AeroMobile-enabled, allowing passengers to use their own mobile phones, up from 31 aircraft a year ago.
In all, 200 flights a day throughout 55 countries are now mobile-equipped, rising from 50 flights a day and 42 countries a year ago. Each month, over 140,000 text messages are sent to and from the aircraft by passengers.
The company's resort portfolio also expanded.
In October, Emirates unveiled the conservation-based project, the Wolgan Valley Resort & Spa, near Sydney.
It has since become the first hotel in the world to achieve carbon neutral certification under an internationally recognised scheme.
In November, half year profits were announced of Dh752 million ($205 million), climbing 165 per cent over the previous year - and on the back of an 18 per cent increase in passengers carried.
Emirates again demonstrated its passion for sports by announcing a Dh300 million ($82 million) shirt sponsorship deal with Italian football giants AC Milan.