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Fri 1 Dec 2006 12:00 AM

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Etihad Holidays expands its reach

Etihad Holidays is now marketing some of its packages out of other GCC countries in response to demand for all-inclusive holiday deals from these growing markets.

“For instance, out of Doha we are selling packages to popular places such as Dubai and Thailand,” said Nick Wood, general manager, Etihad Holidays.

“We started doing this in October and it’s mainly through the trade at the moment.”

Wood said he was also considering offering packages out of Iran once Etihad Airways started operating its three times weekly service to the country’s capital, Tehran, on December 2.

“There is a huge amount of [Iranian] interest in Thailand,” said Wood.

“According to the Tourism Authority of Thailand, Iran has represented the biggest increase in arrivals to Thailand this year.”

But while Etihad Holidays is keen to harness Iran’s outbound market, the company has no immediate plans to offer holidays to the country.

“We think Tehran is an evolving and developing market. We will assess it at a later date,” said Wood.

However, packages to Milan, Malaysia and Shanghai are in the pipeline, as the Abu Dhabi-based carrier prepares to debut in all three destinations next year.

Malaysia will come online on January 15, while dates for the launch of Milan and Shanghai services are yet to be announced.

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