Category Archives: Aviation

Emirates resume flights to Kuwait and Lisbon

Emirates

Emirates announced it will resume passenger services to Kuwait City (August 5) and Lisbon (August 16). This will take Emirates’ passenger network to 70 destinations in August, over 50% of its pre-pandemic destination network, as the airline gradually resumes operations with the safety of its customers, crew and communities as its top priority. Flights from Dubai to Kuwait City will operate as a daily service and flights from Dubai to Lisbon will operate three times a week. The flights will be operated with the Emirates Boeing 777-300ER and can be booked on emirates.com or via travel agents. Destination Dubai: From sun-soaked beaches and heritage activities to world class hospitality and leisure facilities, Dubai is one of the most popular global destinations. In 2019, the city welcomed 16.7 million visitors and hosted over hundreds of global meetings and exhibitions, as well as sports and entertainment events. Free, global cover for COVID-19 related costs: Customers can now travel with confidence, as Emirates has committed to cover COVID-19 related medical expenses, free of cost, should they be diagnosed with COVID-19 during their travel while they are away from home. This cover is immediately effective for customers flying on Emirates until October 31, 2020 (first flight to be completed on or before 31 October 2020), and is valid for 31 days from the moment they fly the first sector of their journey. Health and safety: Emirates has implemented a comprehensive set of measures at every step of the customer journey to ensure the safety of its customers and employees on the ground and in the air, including the distribution of complimentary hygiene kits containing masks, gloves, hand sanitiser and antibacterial wipes to all customers.

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Etihad introduces MicrobeBARRIER face protection for premium passengers

Etihad Airways has launched innovative new protective wear for First and Business class guests. As part of its new health and hygiene programme, Etihad Wellness, premium passengers will receive a snood style facemask for use throughout their journey and beyond. The soft reusable snood has been treated with MicrobeBARRIER fabric treatment, a broad spectrum antimicrobial treatment, laboratory tested and proven to reduce the presence of germs in fabrics. With this long-lasting protective layer, the snoods are washable and reusable, making them environmentally friendly. Travellers can choose to wear the snood around their neck like a scarf and when in close proximity to others, pull it up over their mouth and nose to protect themselves and those around them. Made out of lightweight, breathable and stretchy jersey fabric, the snood is comfortable and ideal for travel because it can be easily slipped on and off as needed. The safety, health, and wellbeing of Etihad’s guests is the airlines top priority, during and beyond the flight. The MicrobeBARRIER treated snood is one of the many initiatives the airline has introduced to create a healthier and cleaner environment.

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IATA calls for harmonised approach for restart of aviation in ME

IATA has called on governments in the Middle East to harmonise biosafety measures for passengers across the region as aviation restarts. A global framework for restarting aviation while protecting public health has been agreed by the International Civil Aviation Organization (ICAO) and published in the Take-Off guidance. However, inconsistent application of these biosafety measures along with unnecessary border constraints are deterring passengers and suppressing the resumption of air travel in the Middle East. “We are starting to see some governments in the Middle East open their borders to regional and international air travel. This is good news but those flying for the first time since the lifting of restrictions face an array of different types of biosafety measures and procedures – which is causing confusion among passengers and delaying the recovery,” said Muhammad Albakri, IATA’s Regional Vice President for Africa and the Middle East. “An effective COVID-19 test has the potential to be a useful risk mitigation measure. However, tests that neither meet the criteria of speed, scalability and reliability nor are offered at reasonable cost, as we are seeing in some countries in the region, have unintended consequences, causing more problems than they solve and will most likely limit the recovery in air travel demand,” said Albakri. “Imposing quarantine measures on arriving passengers keeps countries in isolation and the travel and tourism sector in lockdown. Fortunately, there are policy alternatives that can reduce the risk of importing COVID-19 infections while still allowing for the resumption of travel and tourism that are vital to jump starting national economies. We are proposing a framework with layers of protection to keep sick people from travelling and to mitigate the risk of transmission …

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New PCR testing for travellers flying on Etihad to Abu Dhabi

Effective August 1, all travellers flying Etihad Airways from around the world to Abu Dhabi, and those transferring via Abu Dhabi onto other flights, will be required to show a negative COVID-19 PCR test result from a list of approved testing facilities listed on their website, alongside their ICA approval if Abu Dhabi is their end destination. The PCR test must be carried out within 96 hours prior to arrival in Abu Dhabi and a negative COVID-19 PCR test result certificate from one of the approved clinics listed must be shown for approval to board. Children under the age of 12 and people with mild to severe disabilities are currently exempt from this PCR test requirement. Travellers leaving the UAE from Abu Dhabi to any country in the European Union, the United Kingdom, or to any country where it is mandatory by the authorities at the destination, a negative COVID-19 PCR test result will be required within 96 hours prior to departure. To help facilitate this process, Etihad Airways is collaborating with Mediclinic Middle East to offer departing travellers the option of convenient PRC testing, for a fee, at their home, or at Mediclinic facilities in Abu Dhabi, Al Ain, and Dubai prior to their travel. The gradual return to more international flying to, from, and via Abu Dhabi is being greatly supported by the Etihad Wellness sanitisation and safety programme, which ensures the highest standards of hygiene are maintained at every stage of the customer journey. This includes specially trained Wellness Ambassadors, a first in the industry, who have been introduced by the airline to provide essential travel health information and care on the ground and on every flight, …

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Emirates resumes services to Seychelles

Emirates

Emirates airline announced that it will resume passenger services to Seychelles from 01 August, coinciding with the country’s re-opening to international tourists. Operating flights to Seychelles five times a week with a Boeing 777-300ER, Emirates offers travellers convenient access to this popular Indian Ocean holiday destination. In addition, Emirates will increase its services to the Maldives from the current five a week, to six times a week from 04 August to meet customer demand. For travellers in the UAE, Emirates Holidays offers great holiday packages with a selection of choice resorts in the Seychelles and the Maldives. Emirates Holidays has also relaxed its booking policy to offer customers a chance to book a holiday package in advance with only a deposit of AED 199, as well as introduced video appointments, enabling customers to plan ahead and enjoy a stress-free and personalised booking process from the comfort of their own home. With the gradual re-opening of borders over the summer, Emirates has revised its booking policies to offer customers more flexibility and confidence to plan their travel. Customers whose travel plans are disrupted by COVID-19 related flight or travel restrictions, can simply hold on to their ticket which will be valid for 24 months and rebook to fly at a later time; request travel vouchers to offset against future Emirates purchases, or request refunds via an online form on Emirates’ website or via their travel booking agent.Emirates currently serves over 60 destinations in its network, facilitating travel between the Americas, Europe, Africa, the Middle East and the Asia Pacific through a convenient connection in Dubai for customers across the world.

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Emirates launches bespoke portal for travel trade partners

Emirates

Emirates airline rolled out a brand new, state-of-the-art online gateway to serve its travel trade partners around the world. Tailored for each market, and personalised for each partner to cater to their unique business environment and needs, the Emirates Partners Portal is a one-stop shop for travel industry partners to quickly and securely access the full range of information on Emirates’ latest products, services and policies, and obtain technical support. This dynamic platform reshapes the way Emirates delivers information to their trade partner community. The portal also offers a range of functions including self-service tools and support, and in-built automation of business processes, all aimed at delivering efficiency for travel partners, as well as providing transparency and clarity on the status of transactions. Adnan Kazim, Emirates’ Chief Commercial Officer said: “This is a bespoke platform which is unique in the industry, and it allows us to offer a truly personalised experience based on our partners’ profiles and needs. We invested in listening to our agents and partners, and then we built the Emirates Partner Portal to address their needs whether for information, training or technical support. We are grateful for our partnership with trade communities around the world and are excited to engage and support them through this new platform. “Through the Emirates Partner Portal, backed by the expert support of our commercial teams around the world, we aim to offer unmatched flexibility and empower our travel partners so that they can confidently provide even better services to their customers, and help them to fly better with Emirates. This launch comes at an especially critical in our industry, where the need for the most up-to-date travel information is an essential …

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Emirates first airline to offer free cover for COVID-19

Emirates customers can travel with confidence, as the airline will cover medical expenses of up to EUR 150,000 and quarantine costs of EUR 100 per day for 14 days, should they be diagnosed with COVID-19 during their travel, while they are away from home. This cover is provided by the airline, free of cost to its customers. HH Sheikh Ahmed bin Saeed Al Maktoum, Emirates Group Chairman and Chief Executive said, “Under the directive of His Highness Sheikh Mohammed, UAE Vice President and Prime Minister and Ruler of Dubai, Emirates is proud to lead the way in boosting confidence for international travel. We know people are yearning to fly as borders around the world gradually re-open, but they are seeking flexibility and assurances should something unforeseen happen during their travel.” He added, “Emirates has worked hard to put in place measures at every step of the customer journey to mitigate risk of infection, and we have also revamped our booking policies to offer flexibility. We are now taking it to the next level, by being the first in the industry to offer our customers free global cover for COVID-19 medical expenses and quarantine costs should they incur these costs during their travel. It is an investment on our part, but we are putting our customers first, and we believe they will welcome this initiative.” This cover for COVID-19 related medical expenses and quarantine costs is offered by Emirates free of cost to its customers regardless of class of travel or destination. This cover is immediately effective for customers flying on Emirates until 31 October 2020 (first flight to be completed on or before 31 October 2020). It is valid for …

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Etihad Airways to resume flights to Shanghai

Etihad Airways will resume passenger flights from Abu Dhabi, the capital of the United Arab Emirates, to Shanghai, China. The service will operate with an initial weekly flight using a Boeing 777-300ER, featuring Business and Economy cabins. Robin Kamark, Etihad Aviation Group Chief Commercial Officer, said, “We are delighted to announce the resumption of scheduled services to China, as we gradually return to more destinations on our global network, supporting the recovery of economic and social activities worldwide. Our priority now is to build the network back up on markets that have opened up and to provide a secure and hygienic flying environment across the entire guest journey.” “The restarting of passenger services between Abu Dhabi and Shanghai will cater to the large demand from business travellers in the UAE, China, and other economies in the Middle East and Africa. We are tremendously grateful to our customers and partners for their continued loyalty and we stand ready fly more frequencies to China when possible,” Kamark said. The return to a larger network of international flights is being greatly supported by the Etihad Wellness sanitisation and safety programme, which ensures the highest standards of hygiene are maintained at every stage of the customer journey. This includes specially trained Wellness Ambassadors, a first in the industry, who have been introduced by the airline to provide essential travel health information and care on the ground and on every flight, so guests can fly with greater ease and peace of mind.

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KLM adds Riyadh as a new destination and adjusts Gulf States flight schedule

KLM will expand its network with the opening of Riyadh in Saudi Arabia. Riyadh is an entirely new destination for Schiphol. KLM Royal Dutch Airlines will adjust the flight schedule for flights between Amsterdam Airport Schiphol and the Gulf States in the Middle East. KLM is slowly and carefully expanding its European and intercontinental network. In doing so, KLM aims to offer its customers as much choice of destinations as possible. Adding Riyadh as a new destination will strengthen KLM’s network in the Middle East and help keep it robust. The opening of Riyadh means an increase in the number of destinations, but not in the number of flights to the Middle East, because Riyadh will be combined with an existing destination. The total number of flights KLM operates from Schiphol is far from the pre-corona crisis level. “Our passengers’ safety, comfort, well-being and health remain our highest priority. All of our flights are operated with additional sanitary measures to ensure our passengers safety. We are humbled to be among the first European airlines resuming flights to the Middle East, offering travel solutions to Paris, Amsterdam and beyond. We profoundly thank our customers for their patience and the authorities involved for their continuous support,” said Yeshwant Pawar, General Manager, Air France KLM, Gulf, Iran and Pakistan.

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Etihad Airways adds more destinations to its ‘hand baggage only’ fare

Etihad Airways has expanded its hand baggage only ‘Deal Fare’ which allows travellers to purchase lower fares in Economy Class if no checked baggage is required, to include destinations across Europe and Asia.  The ‘Deal Fare’ includes a complimentary carry-on baggage allowance of 7kg and was initially only available on flights between Abu Dhabi, Bahrain, Kuwait, Oman, Saudi Arabia, Jordan, Lebanon, Egypt and Azerbaijan. Throughout July and August 2020, Etihad is introducing the ‘Deal Fare’ on new routes including: Belarus, Greece, India, Kazakhstan, Kenya, Maldives, Nepal, Pakistan, Russia, Serbia, Seychelles, Sri Lanka, Sudan and Turkey. Robin Kamark, Chief Commercial Officer, Etihad Airways said, “Following its success within the GCC region, we are excited to include more destinations that are six hours or less from Abu Dhabi to our ‘Deal Fare’, giving our guests more options to pack light when travelling for business, weekend getaways or day trips. However, due to current government restrictions in place while travelling during the COVID-19 pandemic, guests are only allowed to bring 5kg of personal hand luggage on board while the complimentary 7kg carry-on baggage allowance attached to the ‘Deal Fare’ will be checked in for free until restrictions are lifted.”  Etihad Guest members who purchase the ‘Deal Fare’ can continue to enjoy an additional free checked baggage allowance (Etihad Guest Silver – 10kg, Etihad Guest Gold – 15kg and Etihad Guest Platinum – 20kg).

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