Etihad, Australia's Virgin Blue in deal
Abu Dhabi, November 6, 2007
Etihad Airways’ customers will gain greater access to destinations in Australia following the signing of a new air deal with Australia's Virgin Blue.
The agreement, which comes into effect immediately, will enable Etihad’s customers to travel seamlessly from Abu Dhabi in its flights to both Sydney and Brisbane and then connect on to 22 cities across Australia.
James Hogan, Etihad Airways’ chief executive officer, said: “The close cooperation with Virgin Blue will enhance significantly the travel experience and potential destinations for our customers flying to Australia.”
“Etihad strives to make as many global destinations available to our customers whether it is opening up new routes of our own or through strategic interline agreements with other airlines, such as the Virgin Blue deal.”
Etihad launched its daily service from Abu Dhabi to Sydney in March 2007, which was followed in September by the opening of its three flights a week service to the Queensland capital, Brisbane.
The Sydney route has proved such a success, with more than 60,000 passengers flying on the sector since its launch, that in March 2008 Etihad will increase the service to 11 flights a week.
Virgin Blue operates more than 2,100 flights per week across Australia to many of the most popular cities including Adelaide, Melbourne, Perth, Cairns and Darwin.
Brett Godfrey, Virgin Blue’s chief executive, said: “It is our ongoing commitment to add value for our passengers. Interline agreements with airlines such as Etihad certainly makes the world easier to navigate for travellers looking to explore every inch of the globe.
“Our new partnership means that our passengers can travel from anywhere on the Virgin Blue network to any of Etihad’s 45 international destinations with ease.” - TradeArabia News Service