August 10 2021  |  Airline & Terminal News

Emirates pre-order program brings in brisk duty free sales

By Rick Lundstrom

Emirates passengers are now buying exclusive duty-free retail products from the airline's EmiratesRED catalog through a new pre-order and purchase option before they fly and delivered to their seat.

Since the soft launch of its pre-order service on in July, Emirates says it has seen a healthy response from across all routes, with exclusive items such as luxury fragrances Creed Aventus and Boadicea The Victorious, and perpetually popular items such as fine watches and the latest tech, being snapped up. New luxury products are being added regularly and all orders will be delivered in exclusive packaging.

The technology platform powering the EmiratesRED pre-order service was developed by Bonflite, a company which has emerged from Intelak, one of the UAE's most established incubator programs for travel and aviation start-ups. Committed to supporting the UAE's vibrant start-up and entrepreneurial scene, the Emirates Group has been an innovation partner of Intelak since the program’s inception.

Emirates customers can pre-order their duty-free items from 21 days up to 40 hours before flight departure. The service is currently available in all classes, on all Emirates flights departing from Dubai. Emirates will progressively offer this pre-order service on flights inbound to its Dubai hub.

As a part of Emirates' ongoing strategy to enable innovative, digital solutions at all steps of the journey, customers can now place orders and pay online from the convenience of their personal device. This enables people to secure products that may otherwise not be available in sufficient quantities on board due to high demand and also delight their loved ones with the ultimate surprise gift on board. For August, there are nearly 20 luxury products on EmiratesRED that are pre-order exclusives and not available onboard.

“By dynamically managing its onboard inventory through pre-order, Emirates is able to reduce fuel burn and its carbon footprint by reducing weight on each flight. Increasing flexibility and reacting dynamically to changing operational requirements and customer preferences is vital during this time,” said a release from the airline. “Since relaunching EmiratesRED inflight retail on board in September 2020, Emirates has seen key inflight retail performance indicators surpass pre-pandemic levels including revenue per customer.”

In the coming months, the airline will expand its pre-order product range to become the primary platform for adding travel add-ons to any Emirates flight, with even more exclusive products including special tickets to some of Dubai's main attractions, bespoke items created for Emirates, and limited-edition items sourced from some of the world's leading brands and vineyards.

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