Etihad Ramps Up Worldwide Network

DALLAS — Emirati carrier Etihad Airways (EY) has announced a new worldwide route network expansion to be introduced at the beginning of the winter season. The Abu Dhabi-based airline will add seven new destinations to the list and increase connectivity on 12 current routes starting in October.

Antonoaldo Neves, CEO of Etihad, said, “As we embark on Etihad’s next chapter targeting growth, our ambitious network and improved connectivity allow us to better serve Abu Dhabi and our valued guests, forming the basis of our future expansion while providing flexibility and freedom to adapt to new opportunities and markets.”

As EY is slowly recovering from the large crisis due to the COVID-19 pandemic and the sudden drop in air travel demand, the network expansion will reinforce its presence as one of the leading airlines in the challenging Middle Eastern airline market.

As well, EY recently reinstated the operation of its largest aircraft, the Airbus A380, on the popular two-daily service between Abu Dhabi (AUH) and London Heathrow Airport (LHR) since July 25, 2023.

The comeback of the Etihad Airbus A380 symbolizes the strong recovery in long-haul air travel demand. Photo: Lorenzo Giacobbo/Airways

New Routes in All Directions

In the strategic plans for Etihad Airways this winter, the carrier has not placed its focus on a specific region to impulse its operations in, but has rather chosen to expand its route network in all directions and across three different continents: Europe, Asia, and North America.

Starting as soon as September 28, EY will start operations in the European cities of Dusseldorf (DUS) and Copenhagen (CPH), two strategic airports for Star Alliance members Scandinavian Airlines (SK) and the Lufthansa Group. Non-stop flights to Osaka (KIX) will start on October 1 as well.

As well, from October 29, at the start of the season change, the airline will inaugurate its new service from Abu Dhabi to St. Petersburg (LED), enabling a new alternative for Russian passengers to travel outside of the country in avoidance of the sanctions imposed by the European Union.

Starting immediately next year, three additional destinations will be added to the list, including Kozhikode (CCJ) and Trivandrum (TRV) in Asia, as well as a new city to be served in the United States from March 31: Boston Logan International Airport (BOS).

Etihad is increasing seat capacity, yet it still has some Boeing 787 units to receive from Boeing. Photo: Andrew Henderson/Airways

50 New Frequencies Around the Globe

Along with the launch of seven new routes, Etihad Airways will add to the schedule up to 50 new frequencies to current services, adding in many cases a second daily flight linked to its second layover bank, with the aim of offering customers more convenient itineraries for their travel plans.

These destinations include Frankfurt (FRA), Rome (FCO), Madrid (MAD), Milan (MXP), Munich (MUC), Phuket (HKT), and Male (MLE). Most of these modifications will be implemented on November 21, 2023.

Etihad Airways awaits four Boeing 787 Dreamliners to be delivered soon and an additional Boeing 777-300ER unit from storage to support the increase in capacity announced by the airline today.

Featured image: Etihad Airways

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