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Emirates Airline Takes to the Sky in Plano's Balloon Festival

Emirates Airline Takes to the Sky in Plano's Balloon Festival ( Participation celebrates airline's entry into Texas market

DUBAI, U.A.E., 24th September – Emirates Airline is taking its high flying message to the international balloon festival, spread across five countries and three continents. To mark its first stop in the United States, the Emirates balloon touched down at the Plano Balloon Festival, Texas, over the weekend.

Participation in this year's festival is one way the airline has marked its entry into the Texas market. Starting 3rd December, 2007, Emirates customers will have the ability to fly non-stop between Houston and Dubai. The new service will initially operate three times a week, increasing to a daily service on 1st February, 2008. The award-winning airline will fly its new Boeing 777-200LR on the route, offering 266 seats in a three-class configuration and up to 14 tonnes of cargo capacity. Emirates operates one of the youngest aircraft fleets and uses some of the industry’s most modern technologies and will fly into Houston's Bush Intercontinental Airport.

The huge Emirates balloon, emblazoned with the familiar red Emirates brand, graced the skies over Plano, Texas, 21-23rd September.

“Emirates is always looking at new ways to expand its transcontinental profile so we are delighted to be taking part in this fantastically visual event that will create a great deal of fun and interest around the globe.” said Ghaith al Ghaith, Emirates Executive Vice President, Commercial Operations Worldwide. “We also enjoy bringing pleasure to people's lives, and seeing the Emirates Balloon in a sea of colours and shapes will no doubt bring smiles to many faces as the festival moves around the world over the months to come."

The Plano Balloon Festival, which forms part of the international celebration, is a popular regional event in Texas, which regularly attracts crowds of more than 70,000 over the three days. Featuring more than 50 balloons, it has grown to become the largest hot air balloon festival in the Dallas area. Young and old flock to see a kaleidoscope of colors, shapes and sizes floating through the sky.

The International Balloon Festival incorporates five other balloon festivals from the USA through to Australia — running until April 2008. The Emirates Balloon will next be seen at the Albuquerque International Festival, 14-16th October.

Sarah Shaughnessy, Corporate Communications, Tel: (+9714) 203.3975, Mob: (+97150) 867.0339; Email :, visit:

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