Abu Dhabi’s Etihad to double flights to India’s largest cities

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James Hogan, President and Chief Executive Officer of Etihad Airways.

James Hogan, President and Chief Executive Officer of Etihad Airways.

Abu Dhabi’s Etihad Airways has doubled the number of flights and tripled the number of seats it operates to the Indian cities of Mumbai and New Delhi, adding wide-bodied Airbus jets on both routes, it was confirmed on Monday.

Under the new route schedules, which commence today, new mid-afternoon services to Mumbai and New Delhi will be operated by single-aisle 136-seat Airbus A320s, while the late evening departures have been upgraded.

The larger aircraft and increased traffic will take the total number of seats operated between the UAE capital and the two Indian hubs from 952 to 2,996 seats in each direction, just over triple the previous capacity.

The flights will also be marketed by Jet Airways, following the UAE carrier’s approval of an historic 24 percent investment in the Indian airline.

“India is a significant and growing market for us,” said James Hogan, president and CEO of Etihad Airways.

“Through our purchase of 24 per cent of Jet Airways – the first foreign investment permitted in an Indian airline – we have laid the foundations for major and exciting growth in air services  between Abu Dhabi and India, and beyond throughout our global network,” he added.

In addition to Mumbai and New Delhi, Etihad will double its scheduled flights from 7 to 14 times per week to Kochi in June 2014, to Bangalore and Chennai in July 2014 and to Hyderabad in October 2014.

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