Business | Aviation

Flydubai aims to top 40 destinations by year-end

Carrier expects 50 new B737-800 aircraft by 2016

  • By Aya Lowe, Staff Reporter
  • Published: 00:00 May 3, 2011
  • Gulf News

  • Image Credit: Virendra Saklani/Gulf News Archive
  • Gaith Al Gaith said while the recent events in the region have affected traffic to countries such as Egypt and Syria, the decrease in outbound traffic to some countries has led to an increase in inbound traffic from other areas.

Dubai: Flydubai aims to offer more than 40 destinations by the end of the year, according to the airline's CEO Gaith Al Gaith.

"We want to have over 40 destinations by the end of this year with more routes in the region, sub-continent and Eastern Europe, supporting the current network we have. We are an airline that services a five-hour radius and within that radius there are about 2.5 billion people. Any combination of any routes you can think about we will fly to. It's just a matter of time," Al Gaith told Gulf News.

The airline, which has been in operation for only 23 months, currently flies to 36 destinations. It recently announced the addition of Riyadh and Jeddah to the network, expanding its presence in Saudi Arabia from three to five key destinations.

The company recently placed an order of over 50 new B737-800NG aircraft which are expected to be delivered by the end of 2016 to aid the expansion.

Flydubai recently announced its partnership with DNRD's (Dubai Naturalisation and Residency Department) visa department to provide self-service facilities in locations such as Dubai Terminal 2, the Ministry of Labour and Twar Centre for customers to book and purchase their flights and visas in one transaction in a bid to boost traffic to destinations that require visas.

While the recent events in the region have affected traffic to countries such as Egypt and Syria, Al Gaith said the decrease in outbound traffic to certain countries has led to an increase in inbound traffic from other areas.

"There is a positive and negative side. On the negative side because of the conflict in the region, some of the places we fly to, there has been a drop in traffic," said Al Gaith.

However, the drop in traffic to certain destinations has been compensated by an increase in traffic to Dubai. According to Al Gaith, there has been an increase especially in tourists from the Gulf Cooperation Council (GCC) such as Saudi Arabia.

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