Abu Dhabi's Etihad Airways aiming for July return to 'meaningful' flight schedule

The airline's CEO said the airline has been working with Dubai's Emirates on cargo operations

Abu Dhabi's Etihad Airways aiming for July return to 'meaningful' flight schedule

Abu Dhabi's Etihad Airways targeting 'meaningful' return to flying in July, according to our sister publication Arabian Business.

Etihad Airways CEO Tony Douglas said the airline has managed to get a “skeleton network” of flights using 25 of its Boeing 787 Dreamliners.

Previously, Etihad said it was looking at a May 16 date for a return to flying, but the airline has since suspended sales of tickets on flights before June 16.

Speaking on CNN’s Quest Means Business, Etihad Airways CEO Tony Douglas said the airline was using the dreamliners for cargo in the aircraft’s bellyhold as well as repatriation of citizens back home and bringing residents back to the UAE.

The schedule has been growing each week, and this week the airline added more flights, including return services to Paris, Geneva, and Milan.

When asked about when the airline planned to return to regular scheduled flights – Douglas said there are “a lot of variables in this equation”.

“It's small steps in a very controlled way, subject obviously to government approval here in Abu Dhabi and the destinations in question,” said Douglas.

“But my sense is we're looking at July 16... When we see that we'd like to make a few more steps, and hopefully with the right approvals in place where it's safe to fly, we'll build off the back of that.”

Douglas also said Etihad had been working with Dubai's Emirates on cargo operations “in a non-competitive way”.

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