Etihad to add flights to India as coronavirus outbreak leaves spare capacity

Etihad has started adding more flights from India as it looks to utilise the capacity which is lying idle due to temporary suspension of most of its operations to China due to coronavirus outbreak.

For now, the airline is increasing the frequency of flights from existing points of network like Trivandrum on a sporadic basis but has decided to add a second frequency to Trivandrum and a third frequency to Chennai for the entire month of May as it looks for “short-term” re-allocation of spare capacity.

“It is a fluid situation and changing every day. We have suspended some operations but we are still operating to Beijing. We are still seeing where we can operate those assets in short term,” a senior executive at Etihad said.

While the airline hopes that the situation which has arisen due to the outbreak of deadly coronavirus be resolved soon, it may look at re-allocating some of the spare capacity on a long-term basis, officials said.

“We are not completely dependent on China. We have opportunities in Saudi Arabia, India, North America among others,” a senior executive said.

The airline provides direct connectivity to Abu Dhabi from 10 Indian cities, namely Ahmedabad, Bengaluru, Chennai, Cochin, Delhi, Hyderabad, Kolkata, Kozhikode, Mumbai and Thiruvananthapuram or Trivandrum.

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