Monday, December 8, 2008
Etihad Airways has unveiled a massive "hub restructuring" of its entire North American and Indian subcontinent bound flights for Summer 2009. These new changes will take place from March 29th 2009 and the main highlights are as follows:
YYZ -capacity increased to 3 weekly B 773ERs from 3 weekly A 346s i.e. an increase of 50 seats per flight and no first class cabin. New flight timings are as follows:
EY 141 Dep AUH 1010 Arr YYZ 1640
EY 140 Dep YYZ 2245 Arr AUH 2000
JFK - maintained with daily flights using an A 345 but its new flight timings are as follows:
EY 101 Dep AUH 0835 Arr JFK 1500 EY 100 Dep JFK 2250 Arr AUH 1950+1
DEL - no more same plane service to YYZ; overall capacity reduced to daily A 320s with night time departures from AUH.
BOM - will see same plane service from JFK i.e. 3 weekly A 345s + 3 weekly A 332s + weekly A 320. All flights will be now night time departures from AUH.
LHE & ISB - both cities see their weekly seating capacity reduced to daily A 320s with night time departures from AUH.
KHI - reduced from double daily flights to daily A 332s only with night time departures from AUH.
DME - frequencies increased from 5 weekly to daily i.e. 2 weekly A 320s + 5 weekly A 319s.
So finally EY sees the light by getting rid of their ridiculous early morning flights to/from JFK/YYZ. These new flights connect within 2-3 hours via AUH to all of the key Indian and Pakistani major cities in both directions and have decent arrival/departure times to/from JFK/YYZ which should help increase their load factors and hopefully yield too.
However, one does not see the point of them offering a same plane A 345 service between JFK and BOM as flying an A 345 between AUH & BOM is a total waste of money due to high operational costs. This begs the question, why didnt they order A 333s for high density flights to KUL/CGK/BOM/DEL/LHE/ISB/DAC/CAI/JED as this is the best aircraft to fly such routes nonstop from AUH.