Etihad Airways will expand its network in South East Asia with the launch of a non-stop daily service between Abu Dhabi and Phuket.
Phuket is the largest island in Thailand and has emerged as one of the world’s most popular destinations for holidays and retirement. Located in the Andaman Sea, tourists flock to the island for its pristine natural beaches and year-round sunshine.
The new route will launch on 26th October 2014 using two-class A330-200 aircraft, with 22 Pearl Business seats and 240 Coral Economy seats. The flights have been scheduled to provide optimal connectivity between Phuket and key markets across Europe and the GCC.
Phuket will become the second destination in Thailand to be served by Etihad Airways, and the seventh in South East Asia, alongside Bangkok, Singapore, Manila, Kuala Lumpur, Ho Chi Minh City and Jakarta.
James Hogan, President and Chief Executive, said: “We have a very successful track record in Thailand. The capital city, Bangkok, has ranked as our most popular route for the past four years, with 742,759 passengers flown in 2013 alone. Expanding our reach in the country with a daily service to Phuket is therefore natural progression.
“The island is a strong addition to Etihad Airways’ leisure portfolio and we will offer attractive arrival and departure times, with seamless connections to 25 European and GCC cities. This includes daily connections from London, Manchester, Berlin, Dusseldorf, Frankfurt, Munich and Paris, in addition to key GCC markets such as Bahrain, Doha, Muscat, Kuwait and Riyadh.”
Phuket is the ninth route to be announced by Etihad Airways in 2014. Services commenced to Medina on 1st February, and will be followed by Jaipur (1st April), Los Angeles (1st June), Zurich (1st June), Yerevan (2nd July), Rome (15th July), Perth (15th July), Phuket (26th October) and Dallas (3rd December).