By Andy Sambidge
Abu Dhabi carrier says it will start operations to capital city Malé on Nov 1, subject to gov't approval
Etihad, the national airline of the UAE, on Monday announced it will commence operations to Malé, the capital city of the Republic of Maldives, on November 1, subject to government approval.
The carrier will operate a daily return service from its home base in Abu Dhabi to Malé International Airport, it said in a statement.
James Hogan, Etihad Airways CEO, said: "Malé is gateway to the premium leisure destination, the Maldive Islands, and given the strong increase in visitation numbers we are seeing in the market, the time is right to launch services to this popular holiday destination."
The Maldives is made up of close to 1,200 islands grouped into natural atolls; including 200 inhabited islands and 97 resort islands, with a population of close to 300,000 people.
The region features deep blue seas, sandy beaches and turquoise reefs, and with its tropical climate and warm temperatures year round, is a renowned honeymoon and leisure destination.
Malé will become the 67th destination on Etihad's global network.