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Abu Dhabi, UAETuesday 20 November 2018

Two A380s and seven stunt jets - the UAE's airlines are planning something big

Dazzling fly-by features Emirates, Etihad, flydubai and Air Arabia

An air convoy featuring two A380s and seven stunt jets can be seen in this picture taken from the Palm. Rory Reynolds / The National
An air convoy featuring two A380s and seven stunt jets can be seen in this picture taken from the Palm. Rory Reynolds / The National

A stunning fly-by featuring an air convoy of double-decker planes and stunt jets had Dubai residents looking to the skies - but the airlines involved are tight lipped as to the reason behind the mission.

In total 11 planes flew over Palm Jumeirah and Dubai Marina on Thursday afternoon, low enough that the roars of their jet engines could be heard far and wide.

Two Airbus A380s - one Emirates and one Etihad - were tailed by seven stunt jets that released coloured smoke oil into the skies.

Two Boeing 737s - one flydubai and one Air Arabia - flew at the front of the convoy.

The stunt planes appeared to be the black and gold jets of the Al Fursan aerobatics team, which often feature in National Day celebrations and at the Dubai Airshow.

Emirates said the fly-by was a "planned formation flight with Etihad Airways, flydubai and Air Arabia" but would not say whether it was for a promotional video or the upcoming National Day.

"We will provide more details in the coming weeks," a spokeswoman added.

Emirates has the largest fleet of A380s in the skies with 101 in service as of this year and 77 more on order.

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Read more:

Emirates to roll out 'full family' of aircraft at Dubai Airshow

Al Fursan aerobatics team puts on a show in Abu Dhabi