By Staff writer
Low cost carrier, Air Arabia, is gearing up for a busy winter, with new routes and holiday packages ready to be rolled out, supported by an aggressive marketing campaign.
“Between December and May we have several destinations coming online, but we will keep our plans low key until the end of Ramadan,” said Kyle Haywood, commercial director, Air Arabia.
“We are planning a campaign for the holidays launch at the end of October or the beginning of November.”
He said holiday division marketing had been quiet to date for two reasons; firstly, the company wanted to test which destinations proved the most popular, and secondly, the political situations in countries such as Lebanon had influenced passenger traffic over the summer period.
“It wasn’t the right time to make a big noise; this summer was different because traditional places like Beirut were unavailable.
There was a huge surge for Turkey and Egypt,” he added.
Jaipur, which came online in May, had also proved popular, particularly with the UAE’s ex-pat crowd, Haywood noted.
He expected Beirut to be “back on the tourist map next year”, and said load factors on Air Arabia’s flights to the Lebanese capital were already running at 90% plus.
The Sharjah-based carrier is also looking at ways to maximise revenue opportunities on board its fleet of aircraft, Haywood revealed.
“A lot of work is going into what auxiliary products we should sell on board,” he said.
“We are looking at quirky products or gimmicks that will appeal to our passengers.”
Haywood also suggested the carrier would negotiate with companies to advertise their products on the seat headrests or table trays.