Emirates and flydubai join forces

Emirates and flydubai join forces

The deal will include network collaboration and coordinated scheduling at Dubai International Airport, where both airlines are based, Emirates said in a statement Monday.

Flydubai passengers will have "seamless connectivity" to the Emirates long-haul network, while Emirates says it will benefit from the low-priced operator's regional service.

The two airlines' combined network is expected to cover 240 destinations by 2020, served by a combined fleet of 380 aircraft, the statement added.

"This new partnership will unlock the vast value that the complementary models of both companies can bring to consumers, each airline, and to Dubai", says Emirates Group chief Sheikh Ahmed bin Saeed Al Maktoum - who is also the chairman of Flydubai.

The agreement will also see alignment of frequent flyer loyalty programmes, providing benefits to customers of both airlines. Emirates' profits fell 70 percent in the year ending on March 31; economies in the Gulf region slowed, demand for seats aboard flights declined due to terrorist attacks and the airline contended with travel restrictions imposed by the USA government.

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The two airlines will also further develop their hub at Dubai Int'l, aligning their systems and operations to ensure a seamless travel experience through the facility.

Terming the tie-up as being on expected lines, Kapil Kaul, Chief Executive Officer and Director, Centre for Asia Pacific Aviation, South Asia, said that the strategic and more intense cooperation is "good for customers as extensive networks of both (the airlines) can now be fully leveraged".

Emirates operates 259 aircraft to 157 destinations (including 16 cargo-only points) and flydubai has a fleet of 58 Boeing 737-800s, serving 95 destinations.

"The partnership is working to optimise the networks and schedules of both airlines, to open up new city-pair connections offering consumers greater choice", the airlines said in a joint statement.

The partnership will be rolled out over the coming months, with the first enhanced code-sharing arrangements to come into effect during the final quarter of 2017.

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