Gulf carriers Emirates and Etihad Airways plan to expand an interline pact to provide additional itinerary options to the UAE.
Passengers flying with either airline will be able to purchase a single ticket into either Dubai or Abu Dhabi with a seamless return via the other airport.
This agreement aims to capitalise on opportunities to boost tourism to the UAE from key source markets by enabling visitors to experience more than one destination in a single itinerary.
Travellers planning to explore the UAE will have with the flexibility of one-stop ticketing for their full journey and convenient baggage check-in.
Each carrier will initially focus on attracting visitors to the UAE by developing inbound interline traffic from select points in Europe and China.
The ‘open jaw’ arrangement will allow visitors to cover as much ground as possible when exploring Abu Dhabi, Dubai or any other emirate, saving time by removing the need to fly home via their arrival airport.
Passengers flying into the UAE also have the option of ‘multi-city flights’, with the choice to travel from one city on both carriers’ networks and returning to another point served by either Emirates or Etihad.
The expanded interline partnership is part of a commitment by both airlines to support the UAE government’s objective to promote inbound tourism and enhance the region’s position as a preferred global destination.
Emirates Airline president Sir Tim Clark said: “We are pleased to be working again with Etihad Airways – this time to allow each carrier to offer a new range of seamless travel options in and out of the UAE.
“Emirates and Etihad are leveraging on our strengths to expand our respective customer offerings and boost UAE tourism.
“We believe this new agreement provides a strong foundation to develop further opportunities between both airlines and is an example of our commitment to the UAE’s vision for continued economic diversification.”
Etihad Airways chief executive Antonoaldo Neves said: “We’re delighted to partner with Emirates in our shared mission to support inbound tourism to the UAE and facilitate travel to our vibrant cities.
“With two world-class airlines supporting UAE tourism, our interline agreement will make it more convenient for our guests to experience the best of Abu Dhabi and Dubai on one single ticket while promising to deliver an exceptional flying experience whether they fly with Etihad Airways or Emirates. It’s a win-win proposition for travellers to the UAE.”
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