Emirates To Begin Flying Between Bali And Auckland

Emirates has just announced a cool new fifth freedom route. As of June 14, 2018, Emirates will be launching daily flights from Dubai to Auckland via Bali. This will be Emirates’ third route to New Zealand, and complements their existing daily nonstop flight from Dubai to Auckland, as well as their daily flight from Dubai to Sydney to Christchurch.

Emirates’ new flight to New Zealand will be operated by a three class Boeing 777-300ER, featuring eight first class seats, 42 business class seats, and 304 economy seats.

Emirates’ 777 first class

The flight will operate with the following schedule:

EK450 Dubai to Bali departing 6:55AM arriving 8:20PM
EK450 Bali to Auckland departing 10:00PM arriving 10:00AM (+1 day)

EK451 Auckland to Bali departing 12:40PM arriving 5:55PM
EK451 Bali to Dubai departing 7:50PM arriving 12:45AM (+1 day)

Bali is almost on the straight path between Dubai and Auckland, as the distance of Dubai to Bali to Auckland is only 20 miles further than the nonstop distance from Dubai to Auckland. So geographically this is a logical stopover point. The flight from Dubai to Bali will cover a distance of ~4,700 miles, while the flight from Bali to Auckland will cover a distance of ~4,200 miles.

Per Emirates’ press release:

Sir Tim Clark, President Emirates Airline, said: “We’re pleased to introduce additional capacity to serve the strong demand for travel to Bali, and to Auckland. We are confident that our year-round service between Auckland and Bali will be well received by our customers, not only in New Zealand and Indonesia, but also from our global network particularly from markets like the UK, Europe and the Middle East.”

With its spectacular mountains and picturesque beaches, Bali is considered to be a world leading tourist destination, welcoming more than 4.5 million foreign tourist arrivals in 2016, including over 40,500 New Zealanders. Emirates’ new service will add to Bali’s global connectivity, further stimulating the island’s economic and tourism growth.

The 40,500 New Zealanders who go to Bali every year doesn’t sound like a terribly compelling reason to launch this route. That translates to about 110 people per day, which is less than a third the capacity of Emirates’ flight (and just because Emirates will fly this route nonstop doesn’t mean everyone will fly with them). However, I suspect the primary motivation for this route is the demand between Auckland and Dubai (and beyond). Emirates began flying nonstop between Dubai and Auckland in 2016, and based on what I’ve heard, the route has performed well. So presumably most passengers taking this flight won’t actually be stopping in Bali, but will be taking the flight all the way to Dubai.

This flight is also a nice addition for those just traveling between Dubai and Bali. While Emirates already operates that route, they presently only do so with a two cabin aircraft, so with this change we’ll finally see the introduction of first class in the market.

What do you make of Emirates’ new flight from Dubai to Bali to Auckland?


  1. The 40,500 people who travel between Bali and NZ in a year might be an underrepresented figure becuase it hasn’t historically been easy to get to Bali from NZ. Either a one-stop routing via Aussie (with the only airline providing through connections being VA), or the seasonal Air NZ service that only operates like twice a week with a creaky old 767. I suspect demand might shoot up significantly.

  2. @Alex and cleaner, too. But I suspect it’s because Bali is cheaper, and offers more than just beaches? So you practically have more options. It’s also a good stopover point for if you want to visit neighbouring islands. Komodo, for example

  3. Lucky, EK have an interesting history with AKL. Until recently they have 4 A380 flights per day leaving from AKL which were all on the ground at the same time making for quite a sight at a relatively small airport. One of these flights went direct to DXB (as it still does) and the other 3 went via MEL, SYD, and BNE (and then onto DXB). There were a number of reasons why they operated like this, primarily I understand because EKs Australian schedule would have had these planes sitting on the ground in Australia for 12 hours each day meaning expensive parking fees, and there was enough cargo demand to operate these tag flights, even if they weren’t full of passengers. When EK recently decided to terminate the 3 x tag-flights I believe they gave some sort of reason about ‘deploying the A380s to other routes with more demand’ which is hard to believe given they send A380s wherever they want, seemingly on a whim.
    I’m not sure there’s a huge amount of one-stop demand to AKL from DXB (one of the reasons the tags were cancelled while the direct flights continues to do very well) especially as the close relationship between QF and EK already provides for a wealth of one-stop options, but I believe it may be more about the underserved market from AKL to DPS. Bali is one of the most popular holiday destinations for Australians so should be similar for New Zealanders. While the Pacific Islands are closer and easier to get to, they’re much more expensive to visit so I can see the appeal of Bali as a destination. I’m not sure there would be much demand for F class on a low-rent leisure destination like this, I would have thought it would be a perfect route for a 2-class 77W.

  4. This will also help their cargo capacity- a fully laden A380 can’t move much whereas a 777 on two shorter legs will provide plenty of lift

    They can also put the EK code on any useful Jetstar connections either end as they do in Singapore to provide some feed

  5. @Lucky — That Dubai–Sydney–Christchurch route you mentioned… Isn’t that Dubai–Bangkok–Sydney–Christchurch, or have they changed it?

  6. I could see this route being popular, dxb to akl is too long for some people, especially those flying in economy. The stopover does provide a much needed rest for passengers.

  7. Any idea when they’ll load this into the schedule? Looking forward to finding out how many EK miles this one will take

  8. There aren’t enough people in New Zealand to support this route daily for a 777 and, with the ridiculous layover in both directions, it doesn’t make much sense to take this path to Dubai. More EK stupidity.

  9. It could be a good option for a stopover from NZ to Europe stopping for a couple of nights in Bali as opposed to Dubai with EK or one of the SEA cities on their carriers, plus with the Qantas venture Australians going to Europe could fly Jetstar or Qantas to Bali, stopover and continue on to Europe via DXB on EK. More options can’t be a bad thing.

  10. I have this funny feeling where the protectionist instincts of the current Indonesian government will kick in, and Emirates will be kicked out. They might, for example, lose one of their 3 daily CGK flights, or have to lose DPS-AKL altogether. Watch as they say that it’s because the runway, or any other factor, at DPS can’t support EK’s operations

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