Etihad Reports Record Year; Bangkok Busiest Route

Travel News Asia Videos Podcasts Latest Travel News Asia Tuesday, 7 January 2014

Etihad Airways achieved its highest ever passenger and cargo volumes in 2013.

Nearly 12 million people flew with Etihad Airways last year, marking a significant increase of nearly 16% in comparison to 2012s figure of 10.3 million.

Bangkok was once again the airlines busiest route, with a total of 742,759 passengers flying to Thailands capital city in 2013, a year-on-year increase of 7%.

Manila was the second busiest route (547,068 passengers), followed by London (544,564 passengers), Jeddah (373,651 passengers) and Paris (338,969 passengers).

Etihad Airways carried 73% of the more than 16.4 million passengers who travelled through Abu Dhabi International Airport in 2013. With the addition of the airlines equity alliance partners that operate flights into Abu Dhabi, the combined total rises to 79% of passenger traffic at Abu Dhabi airport.

Our record-breaking numbers in 2013 reflect the continued success of our strategic master plan, which focuses on three fundamental pillars; organic network growth, the forging of codeshare partnerships, and minority equity investments in other airlines, said James Hogan, President and Chief Executive Officer of Etihad Airways. As the national carrier of the United Arab Emirates, we also continued to support Abu Dhabis growth as a leading international travel hub, while facilitating trade to and from the country.

Six destinations were introduced to Etihad Airways network in 2013, with new services launched to Washington DC in March, Amsterdam in May, Sao Paulo and Belgrade in June, Sanaa in September, and Ho Chi Minh in October.

Frequencies were also increased on 18 existing routes last year and new codeshare agreements were signed with Kenya Airways, Air Serbia, South African Airways, Belavia, Korean Airlines, Air Canada and airBaltic.

During 2013, building on its organic growth, Etihad Airways also expanded its codeshare and equity partnerships, which delivered more than 1.8 million passengers onto Etihad Airways flights, 38% higher than the 1.3 million in 2012.

In addition to its four existing equity partners - airberlin, Air Seychelles, Virgin Australia and Aer Lingus - Etihad Airways announced investments in three additional carriers in 2013.

In August, the airline formalised a five-year contract to manage Serbias national carrier, Air Serbia (formerly Jat Airways), with a 49% equity stake. This was followed in November, when the airline obtained regulatory approval from the Indian government to finalise a 24% investment in Jet Airways, and announced its intention to acquire 33.3% of the Swiss regional carrier Darwin Airline, which will become the first airline to operate under the new brand of Etihad Regional.

Impressive cargo growth was also reported, with 486,753 tonnes of freight and mail flown by Etihad Airways last year, a staggering increase of 32% compared to 2012 volumes. The airline accounted for 89% of cargo imports, exports and transfers at Abu Dhabi airport last year.

Volumes were boosted by enhancements to the freighter fleet capability and more cargo in the belly hold of passenger aircraft. Established markets such as China, Hong Kong and India were top performers, in addition to expanding markets such as the Netherlands and the United States.

Last year, Etihad Airways took delivery of eight Airbus aircraft (four A320s, one A321, two A330-200s and one A330 freighter), eight Boeing aircraft (six 777-300ERs and two 777 freighters), and added further leased capacity which included the airlines inaugural 747-8 freighter. Its fleet now comprises 89 aircraft, with an average age of only 5.2 years.

This has been another game-changing year and once again, the customer was placed at the heart of everything we did. Our service enhancements in 2013, from the launch of our Flying Nanny service to the continued rollout of Wi-Fi internet and live television across our fleet, highlight a commitment to delivering best-in-class products and services, said Mr Hogan. I am excited about what the future holds and look forward to working with all our partners to maximise the return for our shareholder, enable the continued growth and the evolution of Abu Dhabi as an aviation hub, and create a remarkable experience for our passengers.

Etihad Airways Top 10 Routes in 2013

Kuala Lumpur

Etihad Airways, Abu Dhabi

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