Austrian Airlines outlines its premium services
From autumn 2008 onwards, due to healthy demand for the service, Austrian Airlines will begin operating twice daily direct connections from Vienna to Dubai.
The new flight times on both services has enabled Austrian Airlines to provide the best possible connections for business passengers and for tourists travelling to and from Western and Eastern Europe, and the optimum times for passengers from Austria and Dubai.
The airline currently offers one daily direct flight to Dubai, which operates using a Boeing 737 with 16 fixed business class comfort seats. From September 29 however, the departure time will be changed and an Airbus A320 featuring the new premium service concept will be deployed on the night flight. In the business class section, the new aircraft will be fitted with 24 business sleeper seats made by Recaro.
From November 13 onwards, a new day time flight to Dubai will enter service. This will operate until March 15, 2009, using a Boeing 737-800, with high value in-flight service provided. From March 16, 2009, this flight will operate using a converted Airbus A320.
Says Karim El Sanadily, regional manager, Austrian Air, “These new flight times will give our passengers still more flexibility and let them benefit from better connecting flights – something especially important for our transfer passengers from western and eastern Europe and Dubai.
“In this way, we are increasing our daily seating capacity from 158 seats at present to up to 252 seats. For business class passengers, up to 48 business sleeper seats will be available per day in each direction. This is particularly important if we are to meet all the requirements of business passengers.”
According to the premium service concept, business class passengers have 116 cms of legroom, an electrically adjustable back and footrests and an integrated massage function, a PC connection built into the chair, individual reading light and privacy screen.
The airline is introducing across the board a new fleet of Airbus A320 aircraft on a staged basis until September 2008. The upgraded aircraft will be deployed exclusively on existing routes into the Middle East (Damascus, Cairo, Tehran and Dubai), and to Astana in Central Asia, from September 2008 onwards.
The airline will be introducing a chauffeur services starting from this month as complementary for all business class travellers to and from Dubai International Airport, for all tickets purchased in UAE.
The Austrian Airlines group is implementing a range of measures aimed at expanding its products and introducing a quality and service offensive. Numerous new features have been created since 2006, ranging from free snack service in the economy class through to lounges and ground services.
The airline has a modern fleet with an average age of 8.4 years. Its network covers 130 scheduled destinations in 70 different countries, and the airline will be introducing new destinations such as Sochi, Nizhniy Novgorod (both as from April this year), Bourgas, Tallin (codeshare) and Astana. The airline group has opened up key parts of central and eastern Europe, and strengthened the route network through Vienna International Airport.
There is a new, tailor made Austrian Business Jet product, where their partner Jet Alliance transfers top guests directly to Vienna. In addition to first class service, premium guests can benefit from short transfer times to their next flight. Austrian Business Jet guests proceed directly to the aircraft upon arrival.
The airline can also take its top customers to board their aircraft in a limousine on request. After a relaxing flight in Austrian business lass they will be immediately transferred to a business jet that flies customers quickly and directly to their desired destination accompanied by first class service. There is no waiting time or repeated checking in. Austrian Airlines was recently awarded first place in the food and drink category and second place in the best airline in Europe category by the Business Traveller Magazine.
The new Austrian HON Circle Lounge in the priority terminals of Dubai and Vienna Airports has been exclusively available to premium clients since July 15. In the new lounge, customers can check in with or without baggage, and complete their passport and security checks while a personal assistant helps out.
The new Lounge is open from 5.30 am until 11.30 pm., seven days a week. HON Circle members must earn a minimum of 600,000 HON Circle miles in two consecutive calendar years in order to use the lounge.
There is also an exclusive limousine service, in conjunction with the airline’s partner Sixt, which takes HON Circle passengers directly from the lounge onto the apron or connecting flight.
In line with Austrian Airlines 50th year anniversary celebrations, any travel agency staff can earn 50 per cent more points as a member of the Austrian Agent Club.
flights to Iraq start
The airline will resume flights to Erbil, Iraq, from April 2. After examining conditions in Iraq the airline will have three flights a week in April and May and four flights a week from June onwards. Erbil will be reincorporated into the Austrian route network, opening up numerous new connecting flights for passengers. Austrian Airlines was the first European airline to receive landing rights in Iraq. The flights had to be temporarily removed from the schedule from August 24, 2007 due to the security situation then.