Home Business & Finance Etihad Airways explores new horizons in the Middle East with the launch of its newest destination

Etihad Airways explores new horizons in the Middle East with the launch of its newest destination

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News Desk

ABU DHABI: In a move to broaden its network and enhance connectivity within the Middle East, Etihad Airways, the national airline of the United Arab Emirates, today announced the addition of Al Qassim, Saudi Arabia, to its growing list of destinations, increasing its total number of Saudi gateways to four.

The airline is set to expand its footprint by launching flights to one of Saudia Arabia’s most captivating regions. Beginning 24 June 2024, Etihad will link Abu Dhabi’s Zayed International Airport directly with Al Qassim’s Prince Naif Bin Abdulaziz International Airport (ELQ) with four weekly flights.

Reflecting on the new service, Arik De, Chief Revenue and Commercial Officer at Etihad Airways, said: “Launching the new service to Al Qassim this year is not just about introducing a new destination; it’s also a celebration of Etihad’s 20 years of connecting Abu Dhabi with the rich culture and economic opportunities of the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia.”

“This move is aligned with our mission to deliver extraordinary experiences and the opportunity to explore the unique allure of both Abu Dhabi and our new destinations, like Al Qassim. We’re proud to expand our services within the Kingdom and look forward to welcoming passengers to experience our renowned hospitality and service.”

“Furthermore, the exceptional experience awaiting them at Zayed International Airport – Terminal A, our new home, redefines the benchmarks for travel comfort and service excellence, ensuring a memorable journey from start to finish.”

Al Qassim celebrated for its lush date palm groves, rich cultural heritage, and lively markets, offers a perfect blend of traditional Saudi culture and contemporary attractions. This new route is designed to meet the demands of both business travelers seeking new ventures and tourists desiring an authentic exploration of Saudi Arabia’s historical and cultural wealth.

Flight NumberOriginDepartureDestinationArrival AircraftFrequency
EY  0627AUH08:00ELQ09:10A320Mon, Wed, Fri, Sat
EY  0628ELQ10:15AUH13:20A320Mon, Wed, Fri, Sat

And there’s more

Starting 15 June, Etihad is increasing its service frequency to a number of key destinations, and also starting flights to Antalya and Jaipur which were announced in February. 

The weekly flights to Thiruvananthapuram and Amman will be increased by three, totalling 10 and 14 respectively. Additional services include three more flights to Cairo for a total of 24, Karachi increasing to 17, and Colombo to 20 weekly flights.

The latest expansion contributes to an overall 33 per cent increase in Etihad’s total weekly flights, growing from 642 last summer to 855 in 2024, and extends Etihad’s reach from 65 to 76 destinations, significantly enhancing worldwide connectivity.

The updated schedule and the new routes have been developed to optimise the travel experience for passengers, who will benefit from greater connectivity and a broader range of travel options, alongside the opportunity to experience the sophisticated amenities and customer-focused services provided at the newly inaugurated Terminal A at Zayed International Airport Abu Dhabi.

The new schedule is available to book now on etihad.com

New Destinations (Timings from 15 June 2024, all timings local)

Flight NumberOriginDepartureDestinationArrival AircraftFrequency
EY  0539AUH09:20AYT13:00A320Tue, Thu, Sat
EY  0540AYT14:20AUH19:35A320Tue, Thu, Sat


(Timings from 16 June 2024, all timings local)

Flight NumberOriginDepartureDestinationArrival AircraftFrequency
EY  0366AUH03:05JAI08:05A320Mon, Wed, Fri, Sun
EY  0367JAI11:00AUH13:00A320Mon, Wed, Fri, Sun

­Frequency Increases 

DestinationChangeTotal FrequencyStart Date
Thiruvananthapuram+31015 June 2024
Amman+31415 June 2024
Cairo+32415 June 2024
Karachi+31715 June 2024
Colombo+32015 June 2024
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