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The most profitable airline routes in the Middle East have been revealed – and UAE-based airlines account for almost all of them.

Statistics from airline data firm OAG reveal Emirates’ service from Dubai to London was the highest-earning Middle East route in 2018, bringing in more than $776m in revenue. That also made it the third highest-earning route in the world.

In second was the service by Saudi Arabian Airlines (better known as Saudia) from Riyadh to Jeddah. That route brought in more than $602m in revenue last year.

Overall, Emirates had nearly all of the top highest-earning routes in the Middle East. The Dubai-based airline is especially represented in long-haul intercontinental routes to major business hubs such as London, New York, Sydney and Singapore.

Etihad was also represented, with its Abu Dhabi – London service.

Globally, British Airways’ service between London Heathrow and JFK in New York retained its spot as the world’s highest grossing airline route, earning revenues of over $1.15bn in the last year. It is the only route to break the “billion-dollar barrier” and also reported an increased revenue per hour of some 10 per cent in the 12 months from April 2018 to March 2019.

Of the world’s top five highest-earning routes, three of them were to London Heathrow.

(April 2018- March 2019, as revealed by OAG)

Dubai – London Heathrow

Airline: Emirates
Total revenues: $776.6m

Riyadh – Jeddah
Airline: Saudi Arabian Airlines
Total revenues: $602.5m

Dubai – Sydney
Airline: Emirates
Total revenues: $452.8m

Dubai – Melbourne
Airline: Emirates
Total revenues: $365.9m

Abu Dhabi – London Heathrow
Airline: Etihad
Total revenues: $359.5m

Dubai – Singapore
Airline: Emirates
Total revenues: $356.5m

Dubai – New York JFK
Airline: Emirates
Total revenues: $346.2m

Dubai – Paris Charles de Gaulle
Airline: Emirates
Total revenues: $313.3m

(Data from April 2018- March 2019)

1. London Heathrow – New York JFK
Airline: British Airways
Total revenues: $1.159bn
Revenue per hour: $27,159

2. Melbourne – Sydney
Airline: Qantas Airways
Total revenues: $861.2m
Revenue per hour: $23,773

3. Dubai – London Heathrow
Airline: Emirates
Total revenues: $796.2m
Revenue per hour: $24,926

4. Singapore – London Heathrow
Airline: Singapore Airlines
Total revenues: $735.5m
Revenue per hour: $18,771

5. San Francisco-Newark
Airline: United Airlines
Total revenues: $689.3m
Revenue per hour: $12,882