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Sun 9 Jun 2019 11:24 AM

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Video: Impact of Flydubai - Dubai's first budget airline - 10 years on

Dubai’s first budget airline is celebrating its 10th anniversary this year. ABTV's Shruthi Nair takes you through their incredible decade-long journey.

The company was officially set up in March 2008 by the Government of Dubai, forming the city's first low-cost airline.

In June that year, Flydubai announced its arrival by placing an order for 50 Boeing 737-800 NG aircraft at the Farnborough Airshow.

In May 2009, the first aircraft arrived and on 1 June made its inaugural commercial flight to Beirut.

Since commencing operations, Flydubaihas created a network of more than 90 destinations in 47 countries across Africa, Central Asia, the Caucasus, Eastern Europe, the GCC and the Middle East, and Indian Subcontinent.

So far, they have flown over 70 million people since beginning of operations.

Flydubai's CEO is Ghaith Al Ghaith, who by the way, has been named Aviation CEO of the Year by CEO Middle East.

Time for some fun facts now

  • Total number of operated flights: 591,844
  • 1 take off every 7 minutes on average
  • Estimated 1 Billion Miles flown (the equivalent of 2,415 trips to the Moon and back)
  • Estimated carried bags: 74.4 million bags
  • Estimated carried cargo: 232 million kgs (since 2012, the launch date of Flydubai Cargo division)
  • Muscat is the shortest flight on the Flydubai network (01 hr)
  • Helsinki is the longest flight on the Flydubai network. (06 hrs 45 mins)
  • Flydubai and Emirates have a combined network of 240 destinations through its codeshare agreement
  • 296 aircraft are on order and due for delivery over the next decade
  • Flydubai operates more than 1770 weekly flights through its hub in Dubai
  • Flydubai has a work force of 4000 employees from 114 different nationalities

And now if you are curious about the aircraft’s monetary performance, here goes:

  • Flydubai reported total annual revenue of $1.7 billion compared to $1.5 billion last year; an increase of 12.4%
  • Second-Half Profit saw annual loss reduced to $43.5 million
  • Total annual operating cost included a price impact of $112 million in fuel costs

Considering Flydubai is the 2nd largest customer of the Boeing 737 Max globally, I’m sure you want me to give you an update on that.

As of now Flydubai is working closely with the Boeing and its aviation regulator ahead of the jet's certification as global regulators consider whether the jet can safely return to the skies.

However they’ve said that they will not return the grounded single-aisle aircraft into service before it gets the go-ahead from the UAE aviation regulator General Civil Aviation Authority (GCAA)

They are also in talks with Airbus for an order of the competing A320 Neo narrow-body model in the absence of a timeframe for the return of the troubled Maxs to the skies.

Anyway, if you’ve flown Flydubai, then it might be worth knowing that In celebration of 10 years of Flydubai, the airline has launched a dedicated website - - which provides a platform for all passengers to share their favourite Flydubai travel memories.

Or you could even share it with us here, in the comments below.

Background information:

Flydubai started operations in June 2009 to provide convenient, reliable and affordable travel services with the aim to remove barriers to travel, create free flows of trade and tourism and enhance connectivity between different cultures across its ever-expanding network.

The airline has opened up more than 71 new routes that did not previously have direct air links to Dubai or were not served by a UAE national carrier from Dubai. Flydubai operates a young an efficient single fleet-type Boeing 737 aircraft.

The airline placed the largest single-aisle aircraft orders in the region at the 2013 and 2017 editions of the Dubai Airshow, with more than 290 aircraft due for delivery over the next decade.

Flydubai's Economy Class features state of the art RECARO seats which are designed to optimise space and comfort for our passengers.  Flydubai offers an extensive inflight entertainment programme in both Business Class and Economy Class including movies, TV shows, music and games in English, Arabic and Russian.

Fleet: Flydubai operates a single-type fleet of 62 Boeing 737

Passengers: Flydubai carried over 70 million people since beginning of operations.

1st flight: 01 June 2009 Flydubai's first flight took off to Beirut. Flydubai carried more than 2.13 million passengers between DXB and BEY to date growing the market by 66% (comparing first 12 months of operation to last 12 months of operations).

(Source: YouTube channel)