By Eva Fernandes www.kippreport.com
Though increasing oil prices may see a hike in air-flight prices, UAE airlines remain positive with new destinations and A380’s in the pipeline
With the Arabian Travel Market currently on, Kipp’s been OD-ing on hospitality news—and quite frankly we are a little tired of reporting on how international and regional hotel chains are intending to increase their presence in the UAE. So instead, we thought we’d take you through the recent developments in the aviation world (pretty much how international and regional airlines are intent on increasing their global presence). Fascinating stuff, so let’s get down to it.
Emirates Wins Big at the World Travel Awards 2011 Middle East Ceremony – You may not be aware of the World Travel Awards 2011 but for the airline industry and travel industry in general, it’s a pretty big deal. This year, Emirates Airlines won four awards for being the Middle East’s leading airline economy class, for having the Middle East’s leading airline lounge (in Dubai airport), the Middle East’s leading airline reward program for Skywards and its website won the Middle East’s leading airline website award.
Emirates may need to increase airfares: Although Emirates has already increased its airfares by 15 percent this year, should oil prices continue to increase, it seems likely that the Dubai carrier will increase its prices again. Tim Clark, Emirates president said: “We have already done it a number of times this year. We have increased our prices by 15 per cent already. We are leaving it as it is for now but we may have to tend to our costs if oil prices go up to $150 (Dh550.50)-$160 per barrel levels.”
Emirates may increase Airbus order: Emirates currently has 90 Airbus A380s on order, but according to its President, that could increase to 120.
“If we had space available to have more A380s at Dubai International Airport, we would do that and get 120 A380s,” Tim Clark said.
Flydubai looking to bump up destinations to 40 by end of year: Currently flying to 36 destinations including their most recent routes of Riyadh and Jeddah, FlyDubai is considering increasing its flight destinations by the end of this year. FlyDubai CEO Gaith Al Gaith said: “We want to have over 40 destinations by the end of this year with more routes in the region, sub-continent and Eastern Europe supporting the current network. (…) Any combination of any routes you can think about we will fly to, it’s just a matter of time.”