In Brief


Exclusive jets charter now operational
RAYAJET, the most recent and modern leading Executive Jet Charter service in the Middle-East, is now fully operational.

It is the only executive private jet that is ready to take-off whenever you are according to your special needs. Their luxurious Challenger 601 jet, with 10 VIP seats, has a non-stop seven hours flying range and operates out of Amman. Rayajet is also used for Medical evacuation from hospital to hospital or home to hospital with a complete ambulance crew. It offers non-stop flights to the Middle East, Gulf or Europe, and one-stop flights to the US and Canada. The charter service will soon complete their fleet with additional jets.

e-Travel with British Airways now offers a complete package of simple, quick and effective tools to minimise the time and cost involved when travelling for both business and leisure travellers. As the only online airline to assist customers with their pre-departure requirements, enables customers to take control of their travel arrangements. The website not only helps customers find a destination at a price that suits them, but also allows them to book and pay online for their ticket, all from the comfort of their own home or office.

Etihad increases frequency to Egypt
Etihad Airways, has increased its frequency of flights between Abu Dhabi and Cairo to seven times per week. In addition the choice of flights will extend beyond the current daytime flights to offer night departures from Abu Dhabi International Airport, offering more flexibility to guests flying to other parts of Egypt. Etihad Holidays also offers attractive summer packages to Egypt with a wide choice of accommodation and meal arrangements to suite guests’ specific needs. 

Air France launches tele check-in
Air France has now made travelling from Dubai even easier with the convenient check-in by phone. The procedure is simple, practical and fast. A dedicated number for check-in by phone (+9714 2244425) is available only for passengers travelling without luggage, which will help customers to save precious time. Calls can be made maximum five hours and minimum one-and-a-half hours before departure. Passengers must present themselves at the dedicated check-in counter maximum 45 minutes before departure for their boarding pass.

QA spreads wings to East Africa
Qatar Airways is spreading its wings in Africa this winter with flights to Nairobi on November 15, 2005. The Kenyan capital will be served non-stop five-times-a-week from Doha. The airline will operate an Airbus A300-600 in a two-class configuration of 18 seats in Business Class and 232 in Economy Class. To celebrate the route launch, Qatar Airways is offered members of its Privilege Club frequent-flyer programme double Qmiles for the first full month of the new Nairobi flights.

Etihad Airways start operations to Toronto
Etihad Airways, announced that it will commence operations to Toronto via Brussels with three direct weekly flights starting from October this year. The new route to Toronto via Brussels is expected to enhance the link between the UAE, Europe and Canada.

GF to introduce new service to Dublin
Gulf Air will introduce non-stop flights between Bahrain and Dublin, Ireland. Flights start on December 2, 2005 and will be operated by Airbus A330 aircraft, which features state-of-the-art sky beds in First and Business Class. The Dublin service will commence with three flights per week with timings designed for excellent onward connections to the Far East and Australia.

QA goes non-stop to Singapore
Qatar Airways is upgrading its Doha-Singapore route with a new daily non-stop service operated by bigger capacity aircraft. The existing service operates daily using an Airbus A300 with four of the flights flying via the Malaysian capital, Kuala Lumpur. The Singapore route will be operated in a two-class configuration of up to 247 seats in Economy and 24 in Business. The A330 is the backbone of Qatar Airways’ long-haul fleet to destinations as far as Europe, South Africa and Far East, with some aircraft also equipped with a First Class cabin.

New crew members join Air Arabia
AIR Arabia is expanding in the face of growing demand from its customer base. The airline is continuing ongoing recruitment with the addition of the ninth group of cabin crew taking the total number of crew to 92. Air Arabia received its certification last year to conduct their own training for aircraft familiarisation, first aid, general procedures, in-flight emergencies and service techniques and now completes cabin crew training in-house.

Two cities stop-over by Emirates
Emirates’ special offers, Europe with Middle East Stopovers and Middle East Circle Trip Fares, will continue to run 365 days a year. Economy Class passengers travelling from Dubai to 13 European destinations can stopover in any of the airline’s five Middle East cities – Amman, Beirut, Cairo, Damascus or Istanbul – either on the outbound or return journey. The special offer fares for the Europe with Middle East stopovers start from Dh3,750. Passengers pay only a small additional amount to avail of the Middle East Stopovers. With the Middle East Circle Trip Fares, travellers in all three classes can explore twin cities for the price of one. With air fares starting from as low as Dh2,200 in Economy Class, passengers can choose a combination of any two of four cities Amman, Beirut, Cairo and Damascus.

GF increases flights from Istanbul
Gulf Air, is this summer, offering travellers from Istanbul increased opportunities and great incentives to fly to the Arabian Gulf – and beyond. The airline has added a new flight each Tuesday, bringing to four, the number of flights a week from Istanbul to Bahrain – and beyond. This is coupled with a summer savings promotion till September 30, 2005, which offers credit vouchers for 30 per cent discount in first and Business Class as well as selected Economy fares which be used on a subsequent journey or for excess baggage on Gulf Air flights.

Emirates adds flights to Malta
From October 1, Emirates will fly from Dubai to Malta via Larnaca four times a week. Air Malta will codeshare on the flights between Malta and Larnaca. Passengers from Dubai now have the choice of travelling to Malta and Cyprus at 0835 hours on Mondays, Wednesdays, Fridays and Sundays. This service also offers Emirates passengers the added option of flying between Malta and Larnaca. This move by the Dubai-based airline opens up new connections between Larnaca and Malta as well as between Malta and Dubai.

More gains from Swiss and Lufthansa
After their recent merge, leading international carriers Swiss International Airlines and Lufthansa announced new benefits and frequent flyer rewards targeting travellers from the region. Only two weeks after the airlines received cartel clearance, members of SWISS TravelClub and Miles & More started benefiting from the advantage the new partnership brings. From last month, SWISS and Lufthansa passengers have been enjoying more ways in which to earn mileage points as well as reciprocal lounge access.

Tourism Australia focuses on Middle East
Tourism Australia recently increased its marketing focus for the key markets in the Gulf Countries including Bahrain, Kuwait, Qatar, Oman, KSA and UAE. This increased focus is backed by record levels of funding for activities in the region over the next financial year. Tourism Australia’s integrated marketing approach for the region aims to create a stronger brand presence for Australia and build intent and confidence to travel among the target groups of extended Arab families and expatriates. In tandem, Tourism Australia will work with the trade to strengthen the distribution system selling Australian tourism product. To achieve this Tourism Australia will be focusing resources to provide greater sales support in the region.

Sharjah tourism on the rise
THE emirate of Sharjah is witnessing a boom in tourism sector, according to the Sharjah Commerce and tourism Development Authority (SCTDA).Their report shows a 15 per cent increase, the Sharjah’s 61 hotels accommodated 634,281guests in 2005 as compared to 550,731 guests in 2004.  “This report is highly significant in giving a real indication for the way we should perform our business,” says Mohamed A Al Noman, director of SCTDA. “Sharjah has so many facilities to offer – from the 24 state-of-the-art museums, right through to the Formula 1 Powerboat as well as cricket, water sports and nature reserves.”

Oman in Dubai Air Show debut
OMAN will be represented for the first time at the Dubai Air Show this year when Dahra Logistics & Marketing, a regional aircraft spares supplier, takes part in Dubai 2005. “Already new airlines such as Air Arabia and Etihad are growing fast, particularly the low-cost airline model has massive potential and many no-frills operators will start operating from the GCC catering to the needs of passengers from Asian countries,” said Khamis Obaid Mubarak Al Ajmi, CEO, Dahra Logistics & Marketing. Dahra’s Dubai office is expected to launch in April next year

Marhaba extends service to Terminal 2
MARHABA Services, Dnata’s airport passenger services unit, has expanded its operations with the opening of the new 24-hour service counter at Dubai International Airport’s Terminal 2. Travellers passing through Terminal 2 can now avail of Marhaba’s services including meet-and-greet on arrival, assistance with immigration and customs clearance, chauffeur ser¬vice and Marhaba’s CityStop packages for Dubai stopovers. Customers can book for Marhaba Services from counters located in either of the airport terminals, except for the visa drop service, for which they should approach the Marhaba counter in the terminal, where the flight is scheduled to arrive.

TRS inks deal with IATA
TRS Consulting will provide travel industry training, research and consulting services to the travel industry in strategic management in travel and tourism. Talking about the new development, Sundar Vasudaven, principal consultant in TRS Consulting stated, “The IATA Strategic Partnerships provides TRS Consulting with the opportunity to contribute in a small way towards the advancement of the Travel Industry through its Travel Industry Training, Research and Consulting Services.”

Transguard in deal with Dubai Duty Free
DUBAI Duty Free has contracted Emirates Group Security to assist in safeguarding its 24-hour outlets located within Dubai International Airport Terminals 1 and 2. Under the agreement, Emirates Group Security will provide trained and uniformed security personnel from its Transguard division to maintain J vigilance at Dubai Duty Free’s exten¬sive shop floor spacing of over 7,000 sqm in both terminals.