In a surprising move, Etihad Airways will switch its existing Dublin flights from Terminal 2 to Terminal 1, starting on 24th January 2017. The move follows extensive investment in passenger and retail facilities in the terminal by airport operator DAA.
Vincent Harrison, Dublin Airport Managing Director, said: “Since Etihad Airways launched the route in 2007, Dublin has been a hugely popular destination in its network, and the return to a double-daily service will be welcomed by business and leisure travellers. It is good news for Irish tourism and also for those travelling to Abu Dhabi and beyond, with Etihad’s excellent connectivity to the Middle East, Africa and Asia.
“We have been improving the departures and arrivals areas in T1 and have also recently enhanced the boarding gate facilities and the retail experience. We look forward to welcoming Etihad to its new Dublin home from early next year.”
Etihad Airways also announced that it will revert to a double-daily year-round service between Abu Dhabi and Dublin, which will increase frequency on the route to 14 flights a week, effective from 1st April 2017.
The second daily operation, from the beginning of the summer 2017 season, reflects Etihad Airways’ long-term commitment to the route, and coincides with the Abu Dhabi-based carrier’s 10th anniversary of flying to the Irish capital.
Operating with a two-class A330-200 offering 22 Business Class and 240 Economy Class seats, the extra daily service will give guests more travel options at convenient timings, and greater connectivity to key markets across the Middle East, Africa, Indian subcontinent, Asia and Australia.
Beatrice Cosgrove, Etihad Airways General Manager Ireland, added: “With our enhanced schedules from next April, we will be able to provide excellent new connections for travellers from Ireland to many more destinations in our network via Abu Dhabi. The expansion comes as we celebrate 10 years of flying on the route and welcome more guests to enjoy our fine hospitality and service.”
Etihad Airways recently hosted a delegation of officials from Tourism Ireland led by Chief Executive Niall Gibbons as part of a travel trade incentive roadshow for UAE agents to promote holidays to Ireland. Tourism Ireland estimates that 65,000 visitors travelled from the UAE to Ireland in 2015, representing an 18% increase over the previous year.
Business and leisure travellers will be able to enjoy double-daily connections via Abu Dhabi to several key destinations, including Sydney, Melbourne, Perth, Mumbai, Delhi, Cochin, Bangkok, Kuala Lumpur and Manila, and daily connections to markets such as Brisbane, Perth, Beijing, Tokyo and Phuket.