Air Arabia Abu Dhabi fixes 3Q20 launch date


Air Arabia Abu Dhabi (3L, Abu Dhabi Int’l) will commence operations on July 14 using a pair of A320-200s initially. An airline statement said the start-up’s inaugural route will be a 3x weekly service from Abu Dhabi Int’l to Alexandria Borg el Arab followed by a weekly service to Sohag the day after.

“In these extraordinary times, it gives us great pride to launch Air Arabia Abu Dhabi, the capital’s first low-cost carrier,” Tony Douglas, Group Chief Executive Officer, Etihad Aviation Group, said. “This joint venture between Etihad and Air Arabia will offer greater convenience and direct access to the UAE’s thriving capital for new markets worldwide, beginning with two key Egyptian routes, and expanding in time.”

Air Arabia Abu Dhabi is the fourth AOC in the Air Arabia stable of carriers after Air Arabia (G9, Sharjah), Air Arabia Egypt (E5, Alexandria Borg el Arab), and Air Arabia Maroc (3O, Casablanca Int’l). With the lifting of COVID-19 restrictive measures around the world, all three carriers have since resumed scheduled commercial flights although Air Arabia Maroc is restricted to domestic flights given Morocco has yet to reopen its airports to international services.

Ahead of its proposed launch towards the end of this year, the United Arab Emirates’ (UAE) next locally-based LCC, Wizz Air Abu Dhabi (Abu Dhabi Int’l), has been granted national carrier status by the Cabinet. The move allows the nascent airline to be eligible for route allocations under the country’s various air service agreements alongside Air Arabia, Air Arabia (Abu Dhabi), Emirates, flydubai, and Etihad Airways (EY, Abu Dhabi Int’l).