Etihad Airways will deploy a three cabin ultra-long range Boeing 777-200LR on the Los Angeles route. Image Credit: Gulf News Archives

Abu Dhabi: Etihad Airways, the national airline of the UAE, on Tuesday announced the launch of direct flights to Los Angeles from next year.

The expansion of its US operation will see the airline commence non-stop daily flights between its Abu Dhabi home-base and Los Angeles from June 1, 2014, subject to regulatory approvals.

The Californian city will be Etihad Airways’ fourth US destination, joining Chicago, New York and Washington DC and will see the airline provide 28 return flights each week between the UAE and US.

The announcement was made by James Hogan, Etihad Airways’ President and Chief Executive Officer in Los Angeles on Monday. Hogan said: “We are delighted to add Los Angeles, a major US and global destination with a significant metropolitan population and growing economy, to the Etihad Airways’ network in 2014. This expansion will see Etihad Airways offer air travellers daily flights, from our Abu Dhabi hub, to four destinations across the US.”

The new service will increase Etihad’s operations in the US market by 33 per cent and cater for growing leisure and business traffic demands in Los Angeles, as well as the considerable catchment area of the city.

Los Angeles, one of the world’s most iconic, popular, and multicultural destinations with a metropolitan population area of more than 18 million people, is the second largest in the US.

It is classified as a ‘global city’ with strengths in business, international trade, entertainment, culture, media, fashion, science, sports, technology, education, medicine and research. “The expansion of the US network also will be of considerable benefit to the growing commercial and cultural ties between the US and UAE, with trade between the two countries set to increase beyond the current annual level of $22.5 billion [Dh82.75 billion],” Hogan added.

“The new service will also offer maximum connectivity, via Abu Dhabi, with 25 Etihad Airways destinations across the Middle East region and Indian Subcontinent, 12 of which are in India, catering for the demand from Los Angeles’ diverse and multicultural population.”

Etihad Airways, four times voted World’s Leading Airline, will deploy a three cabin ultra-long range Boeing 777-200LR on the Los Angeles operation.

Flight EY171 will depart daily from Abu Dhabi at 8.45am and arrive in Los Angeles at 2.15pm the same day. The return flight, EY170, will the depart Los Angeles at 4.15pm and arrive in Abu Dhabi at 7.35pm the following day.