Indian carrriers to cut third of flights to Dubai


Indian carriers are cutting more than a third of about 275 weekly flights to Dubai as one of the two runways at its airport — the world’s second busiest — remains shut for nearly three months starting May 1. The carriers have either cancelled flights or rescheduled them to Sharjah, which is half an hour from Dubai executives at IndiGo, Jet Airways, Air India and SpiceJet told Economic Times.

On the other hand Emirates will cancel 21 weekly flights out of its total of 185 to India. Travel company executives said while the point-to-point traffic will shift to Sharjah, the hub traffic, the primary bread and butter for the airport and its carrier Emirates will go to competitors. The reduction is however unlikely to have a significant impact on passenger traffic flying to Dubai for the Indian Premier League as UAE will host matches only till April 30. The remaining matches will be played at venues in India.

The flight reductions from India will have the clearest impact on the airport’s international traffic. India contributed the biggest chunk — 8.4 million — of 66.43 million passengers handled by the Dubai airport last year.

“So while some of the through passengers will go to Abu Dhabi on Etihad, the rest of them will either go to south east Asian carriers for the US routes or European carriers such as Lufthansa and British Airways,” said Manoj Samuel, director at Riya Travels, one of India’s biggest brick and mortar travel agencies. Etihad operates 84 weekly flights to 10 cities in India, while Singapore Airlines operates 63.

Read the full report here, Economic Times



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