From left: Robin Kamark, Chief Commercial Officer, Etihad Aviation Group, Isidre Gavin Valls, Secretary for Infrastructure and Transport and President of the Barcelona Air Route Development Committee, MC Ainhoa Arbizu, Mohammad Al Shamsi, UAE Consul General in Barcelona and Tony Douglas, Group CEO, Etihad, cut the ceremonial cake. Image Credit: Etihad

Barcelona: Etihad Airways CEO Tony Douglas announced plans to offer its customers better optionality, on the sidelines of an event in Spain on Wednesday to celebrate the airline’s inaugural flight to Barcelona.

“Etihad prides itself on being different by trying to provide optionality,” Douglas told guests at the reception, held in the historic Capella dels Angels.

”You may want to fly in an economy seat, check in with additional legroom, or maybe select a premium meal offer from business class, or pick the pyjamas from first class, take extra baggage allowance, or have a limousine service. If that’s your choice by definition, your choice is a good choice.

“Equally, if you want to take the lowest costs possible by de-selecting all the things you don’t want, that would be your choice as well and that would be a good choice.

“Etihad will be the airline of choices, which will allow everybody who chooses to fly with us to have what they want, as opposed to the standard offer, therefore allowing choice to be something that makes it special for you personally.”

Barcelona route opens

Etihad will now fly direct from Abu Dhabi to Barcelona five times a week, except Tuesdays and Thursdays, before going daily from March 31. It is the Abu Dhabi airline’s second new route launch of the year after Baku in Azerbaijan, in March.

“Today, it’s 31 degrees in Abu Dhabi and pretty much like that all the way through until the end of April,” Douglas added. “So, when Europe is off season we are in season.

“Whether you are a cruise operator, hotelier, tourist or tourism operator, we’ve got that perfect balance between our on season and your off and vice versa, so I think we’ve chosen very well in putting this service on to Barcelona.”