The FINANCIAL — Etihad Airways is to extend further its expanding global network by providing its customers with greater access to destinations in Ireland, following the signing of a new codeshare agreement with Aer Arann, of Ireland.
Under the deal, which is now in force, the Abu Dhabi-based airline will place its two-letter ‘EY’ code on Aer Arann’s regional flights from Dublin to Cork and Galway in Ireland and also to the Isle of Man.
"In turn, the codeshare agreement will give air travellers in Ireland and the Isle of Man access, via Dublin, to Etihad’s home base of Abu Dhabi and beyond it to nearly 50 destinations on the airline’s global network which covers the Middle East, Africa, Asia, Australia, Europe and North America." Etihad Airways reports.
James Hogan, Etihad Airways’ chief executive, said: “Etihad Airways has developed a strong affinity with Ireland, with Dublin quickly establishing itself as one of our most popular routes, enjoying average seat factors during 2008 of more than 80 per cent.
“There is great demand amongst our customers to travel beyond the Irish capital, which this new codeshare agreement now allows.”
Paul Schütz, Aer Arann’s chief executive, added: “The importance of regional access within Ireland to major international routes cannot be over-stated and this codeshare agreement is a very significant addition to the infrastructure supporting business and the economy in the Irish regions.
“Both business and leisure passengers can now enjoy seamless travel from Cork, Galway and the Isle of Man to the entire Etihad network.”
Etihad Airways strengthened its ties with Ireland in March 2008 when it announced details of a two-year sponsorship deal of the All-Ireland Senior Hurling Championships. In the same month, the airline also increased it flights to Ireland to a daily service. Etihad is now the only carrier to fly direct from Ireland to the Middle East and beyond.
Etihad operates seven flights a week to Dublin. Flight EY41 departs Abu Dhabi on Tuesdays, Thursdays, Saturdays and Sundays at 1.50pm and arrives in Dublin at 6.25pm the same day. Return flight EY48 departs Dublin on the same days at 7.55pm and arrives in Abu Dhabi at 7.20am the following day.
Flight EY45 departs Abu Dhabi on Mondays, Wednesdays and Fridays at 2.10am and arrives in Dublin at 6.45am the same day. Return flight EY42 departs Dublin on the same days at 9.00am and arrives in Abu Dhabi at 8.25pm the same day.
Etihad currently has 10 other codeshare agreements with Brussels Airlines, Malaysian Airlines, Jet Airways, Yemen Airways, Saudi Arabia Airlines, Sri Lankan Airlines, Royal Air Maroc, Philippine Airlines, Middle East Airlines and UK-based airline, bmi.
Aer Arann is a regional airline based in Dublin, Ireland. The airline operated its first commercial flight in 1970. The airline today operates more than 600 flights per week across 40 different routes between Ireland, France, and the United Kingdom.