UAE's Dubai Airports announced (23-Oct-2013) Gulf Air signed a MoU to become the first full-service passenger airline to operate at Dubai World Central (DWC). The airline plans to commence daily Bahrain-Dubai World Central service with two-class A320 equipment, effective 08-Dec-2013 - see Route Changes Table for more information. The carrier currently operates 51 times weekly Bahrain-Dubai International Airport service and the new route will target travellers who value Dubai World Central's proximity to new Dubai. Dubai Airports CEO Paul Griffiths said, "Gulf Air’s daily service to Bahrain and onward connections through its network are sure to be appealing to a wide number of travellers. It’s clear the interest in our new passenger terminal is growing in leaps and bounds. We are confident passengers will appreciate the sleek efficiency of our newest passenger terminal and the growing slate of flights it has on offer." Gulf Air acting CEO Maher Salman Al Musallam said, "Gulf Air’s new daily evening flight to DWC will provide additional travel options and seamless connections through Bahrain to over 30 destinations, maximising passenger convenience. Furthermore, the airport’s close proximity to the holiday, residential and business developments of Arabian Ranches, Dubai Marina, Dubai Media City and Palm Jumeirah, make it an attractive, alternative, time-saving travel proposition for passengers located in or travelling to these areas." Dubai World Central is scheduled to open its passenger terminal on 27-Oct-2013. [more - original PR]
Gulf Air to commence service to Dubai World Central in Dec-2013
You may also be interested in the following articles...
flydubai outlook improves, with reduced losses and faster rebound despite global uncertainty
As airlines worry about having passed their peaks and entering a downturn, flydubai, the LCC owned by the Dubai government, is on an upwards trajectory. This is very welcome after flydubai's sudden and sharp 1H2015 loss occurred as most other airlines were in party mode, buoyed by low fuel prices. flydubai significantly narrowed its 1H2016 loss despite double-digit growth. With the industry worrying about its health, flydubai appears to have caught the cold early and rebounded from it. An improvement in load factor, uplift in business traffic (19%) and reduction in expenses may show greater efficiency that can be maintained – the silver lining to the financial upset.
flydubai's 1H2016 loss narrowed to USD24.5 million from 1H2015's USD40 million, despite a 14.9% increase in flights. Losses per passenger decreased about nine percentage points faster. Unlike its bigger sister Emirates, also owned by the Dubai government but run separately, flydubai is primarily a point-to-point operator - so it depends on the health of Dubai.
Lufthansa and Etihad bedfellows - at last - but unions may make marriage a distant prospect
There can be no understating the symbolic change in mindset of Lufthansa agreeing to partner with Etihad. Lufthansa has spent the better part of a decade rallying against Gulf airlines to the press, lobbying in Europe's power corridors and seeking a range of aeropolitical measures to wind back new competitors. Etihad has been the prime target for its investment and ongoing top-ups in a range of European airlines including Lufthansa's home competitor, the failing airberlin. Despite that, it is not well known that the two have come close to a liaison before, suggesting that each sees an intrinsic logic in a relationship.
The partnership has potential to be more significant than Emirates-Qantas, Qatar-IAG or Etihad-AF-KLM. But for now it is limited in scope and caution should be exercised in extrapolating too far at this stage.
Lufthansa CEO Carsten Spohr is seeking new growth platforms that sidestep the flagship business' uncompromising unions who would seemingly prefer a status quo that exists only in memory. Their support will be necessary if the partnership is to work and grow. Then Lufthansa, which has rallied the Star Alliance and JV partners against Gulf airlines, will need to explain its change of heart. For now Lufthansa will not partner on Etihad's beyond-Abu Dhabi network, a move that would embrace the fundamental business plan of Etihad and peers. That upside remains a matter for speculation.