The introduction of a third daily Emirates Airbus A380 superjumbo on the Manchester-Dubai route from the new year has been welcomed by the north-west hub.

The replacement of a Boeing 777 from January 1 will mean that all Emirates flights from Manchester will be operated by the double decker aircraft.

Use of the larger 517-seat aircraft will enable the airline to offer 2,198 additional seats a week on the route, equivalent to an 11% capacity increase.

The carrier also expects to break the symbolic mark of one million passengers carried on the route for this financial year.

Manchester airport commercial director, Stephen Turner, said: “It’s fantastic news that Emirates has chosen to increase capacity at the airport by using an Airbus A380 on its morning service.

“It’s an iconic aircraft that is hugely popular with passengers across the region. 

“Emirates has seen consistent growth since it first used the A380 at Manchester in 2010 and Dubai has been the most popular destination from the airport for the last few years.”

Emirates also plans to swap an A380 departure from Birmingham airport from the morning to the afternoon to offer passengers more connections beyond Dubai to other destinations, also from January 1.

The adjustment of the Birmingham schedule is aimed providing more “A380 to A380” connections via the Middle East hub.

The A380 service from Birmingham will continue to operate with a two-class configuration aircraft with 615 seats.