Marking an important milestone in its planned growth strategy, the Saudi Arabian national carrier flynas today inaugurated its new service connecting Riyadh and Abu Dhabi with non-stop flights operating five days per week.
Highlighting flynas’ success in strategically expanding its footprint in key markets across the region, the launch of the new service makes Abu Dhabi the fourth destination to be added to the airline’s GCC network after Dubai, Kuwait and Bahrain and expands the leading low-cost carrier’s reach to a total of 26 destinations within and outside of the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia (KSA).
Commenting on the launch of the new service, Bander Al Mohanna, NAS Holding CEO, said: “We are delighted to touch down in Abu Dhabi with the launch of this new five-times-per-week service that connects the two capitals while offering convenient and affordable air travel options to guests traveling in both directions. Adding Abu Dhabi to our GCC route network is an important strategic step for flynas due to multiple reasons, including our codeshare agreement with Etihad Airways as well as the long-standing friendship and the strong bilateral business and economic ties shared by the two nations. Moreover, Abu Dhabi’s growing prominence as both a leading family-friendly tourism destination and a strategic business hub makes the opening of the new route a highly attractive proposition for Saudi travelers.”
“The service also takes our codeshare partnership with Etihad Airways to a whole new level, creating further opportunity for growth as we soar into the future with a renewed business strategy to continue expanding our reach into new markets with sheer confidence and optimism,” Bander Al Mohanna added.
Offering many benefits to flynas guests traveling from KSA, the new service strengthens flynas’ codeshare partnership with the UAE’s national airline Etihad Airways, which allows flynas to place its “XY” flight code on over 200 Etihad Airways’ flights between Abu Dhabi and 20 international destinations, including Amsterdam, Brussels, Casablanca, Geneva, Islamabad, Jakarta, Karachi, Kuala Lumpur, Lahore, London, Manchester, Paris, São Paulo, Seychelles, Singapore, Zurich, and subsequently on flights operating to the Indian subcontinent over the coming months, subject to regulatory approvals. As part of the agreement, flynas flights can be sold to over 100 destinations around the world. Moreover, Etihad Airways will further promote the new service – providing additional value to flynas’ network throughout KSA.
“Our codeshare agreement with flynas was initiated over three years ago, and the partnership has developed into an outstanding commercial success. Importantly, we are providing the increasing numbers of business and leisure travelers with enhanced travel options into and out of KSA,” said Kevin Knight, Etihad Airways’ Chief Strategy and Planning Officer.
“We are delighted to build on this success by codesharing on flynas’ new flights between Riyadh and Abu Dhabi, which complements Etihad Airways’ 13 weekly flights between the two cities. We congratulate flynas on the launch of this new service, which will create new value for our companies and increase travel options for our guests,” Kevin Knight added.
Welcoming flynas’ inaugural flight in Abu Dhabi, Eng. Mohamed Mubarak Al Mazrouei, CEO of Abu Dhabi Airports, said: “We are pleased to welcome flynas’ entry into the UAE capital. This new service is in line with our strategy of further developing our airline portfolio while providing passengers with a world-class travel experience whether they are traveling for business or leisure. The opening of this strategic route also successfully complements the collaborative efforts made by Abu Dhabi Airports and Abu Dhabi Tourism and Cultural Authority to further strengthen Abu Dhabi’s position as one of the leading tourist destinations regionally and internationally. From providing efficient and timely ground handling processes to smooth and easy flow of passengers at the airport, we look forward to fully cooperating with flynas to ensure the success of this new service.”
“The new service has been specifically timed to coincide with the afternoon departure of Etihad Airways’ connecting banks. This provides excellent connections to Etihad Airways’ network eastbound, specifically to Pakistan, India and Far East, increases flynas’ visibility around the world and opens up KSA to a larger number of business and religious travelers,” added Bander Al Mohanna.
In celebration of the occasion, flynas also hosted a gala dinner at Eastern Mangroves Hotel & Spa by Anantara, Abu Dhabi, which was attended by senior executives from Etihad Airways and Abu Dhabi Airports in addition to other government dignitaries and business partners.
The new route will operate every Sunday, Tuesday, Wednesday, Thursday and Saturday – departing Riyadh at 9:35am to land in Abu Dhabi at 12:35pm local time while the return leaves Abu Dhabi at 2:45pm, arriving into Riyadh’s King Khalid International Airport at 3:45pm local time.