Emirates Operates Its First Fully Vaccinated Passenger Flight



Emirates proudly shared today that it successfully completed its first flight where everyone on board was vaccinated against COVID-19. The Dubai-based carried nearly 400 vaccinated passengers around the UAE this afternoon.

EK2021 Emirates A380
The Airbus A380 that performed the flight holds registration A6-EVN and only joined Emirates in December. Photo: Emirates

A combined effort

The flight was boarded by both fully vaccinated crew and passengers and was also supported by fully vaccinated ground staff. Emirates highlights that this move demonstrates the UAE’s readiness to support the safe return of air travel. Altogether, the country has administered nearly nine million vaccine doses to date and is intent on upholding its responsibility as an important connector across the globe.

Notably, over 35,000 Emirates employees have received their coronavirus vaccine shot from one of the company’s vaccination centers. Moreover, over 85% of the airline’s pilots and flight attendants already have received two doses. The firm was also putting work in ahead of the vaccine rollout, getting Dubai World Central (DWC) prepared for distribution last fall.

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Today’s flight follows another milestone in In February when it performed the first flight serviced by fully vaccinated frontline teams across all passenger touchpoints. This event saw over 70 vaccinated frontline team members across the operational scope support a service from Dubai to Los Angeles.

EK2021 Emirates Passengers
EK2021 left Dubai International Airport at 12:23 GST and landed back at 16:29 GST. Photo: Emirates

A grand occasion

All passengers on flight EK2021 were provided rapid COVID-19 PCR tests. These were facilitated by Pure Health, the largest integrated healthcare solutions provider in the UAE. After checking in, the fliers received a green ‘Choose to Vaccinate’ pin and took photos to mark the special event. All passengers also received a bespoke ‘Choose to Vaccinate’ stamp on each boarding pass. After disembarking, they were given commemorative certificates for taking part.


EK2021 Emirates
Emirates is consistent with its approach across the customer journey. Photo: Emirates

Emirates chairman and CEO Sheikh Ahmed bin Saeed Al Maktoum said the following about the vaccination efforts.

“The UAE’s rapid pace and progress in vaccinating our population is a testament of our leadership’s vision and commitment to safeguard our communities, and manage the pandemic by adopting the appropriate measures to protect both nationals and residents. Today’s flight is a showcase of the combined efforts and dedication of all stakeholders in supporting the vaccination programme, and the implementation of protocols in the past 12 months to ensure a safe travel journey, stimulate passenger traffic and set the groundwork for the ramp up of air travel in the near future. Emirates continues to support the national vaccination programme and we are pleased with the progress made within the group in vaccinating our employees.”


EK2021 Emirates Crew
UAE National Captain Ahmed Al Obeidli, First Officer Ramon Wilde helmed the photo: Emirates

Meanwhile, Emirates COO Adel Al Redha added the following:

We would like to thank the UAE Ministry of Health and Prevention, the Dubai Health Authority, The UAE General Civil Aviation authority (GCAA), Dubai Airports, GRFDA, Dubai Police, Airbus and Pure Health as well as other stakeholders for their close cooperation and support of our special flight.”

EK2021 Emirates Attendants
Emirates has full faith in the vaccination program. Photo: Emirates

The next chapter

This flight follows another scenic flight by Qatar Airways this week, which was the world’s first fully vaccinated flight. Altogether, initiatives such as these are crucial in demonstrating that people can travel safely despite the challenging circumstances. Authorities need to take a look at these examples when planning for the reopening of travel following a year of downturn.

What are your thoughts about Emirates’ fully vaccinated flight? Let us know what you think of the achievement in the comment section.