By Bernd Debusmann Jr
Flydubai has also operated relief flights to a number of destinations impacted by travel restrictions during the pandemic
Dubai-based airline Flydubai has allocated six-generation 737-800 aircraft to operate as cargo flights shuttling essential goods amid the coronavirus pandemic.
“We recognize that air cargo has an important role to play in supporting the continuity of the supply chain and the efforts at a government and a private sector level to ensure the movement of essential supplies, especially during these unprecedented times,” said Hamad Obaidalla, chief commercial officer at Flydubai.
Flydubai, like the UAE’s other airlines, has had to temporarily suspend passenger operations as part of precautionary measures announced by the National Emergency Crisis and Disasters Management Authority (NCEMA) and the UAE’s General Civil Aviation Authority.
Flydubai is using the cargo hold capacity in its passenger aircraft and has been working with authorities to increase its cargo operations by allowing cargo in the cabin to a number of destinations, in line with guidelines from Boeing and the International Air Transport Association (IATA).
The airline has also operated relief flights to a number of countries impacted by travel restrictions, including Azerbaijan, Egypt, India, Kuwait, Lebanon, Montenegro, Pakistan, Saudi Arabia, and Sudan.
“We have seen a strong global demand for cargo and we are working towards expanding our operations beyond the Flydubai network to enable more goods to be transported to those who need them the most,” said Mohamed Hassan, vice president of cargo operations at Flydubai. “We are following the guidelines set by the IATA and the World Health Organisation to the highest standards and coordinating closely with our strategic partners to maximise existing capacity, resources and our network reach."