Etihad Airways, the national airline of the UAE, has introduced Mumbai to its Airbus A380 network with the launch of daily scheduled flights featuring its award-winning The Residence, the world’s first three-room suite on a commercial airliner.
Flight EY204 from Abu Dhabi landed at Chhatrapati Shivaji International Airport in Mumbai late on Monday on the celebrated occasion of Maharashtra Day, the 56th anniversary of the state’s formation. Mumbai becomes the airline’s fourth A380 destination following London Heathrow, Sydney and New York, with Melbourne set to join on June 1.
Etihad Airways senior management team led by Mohammed Al Bulooki, vice-president for commercial in the UAE, flew on the inaugural flight, arriving to a traditional lamp-lighting ceremony attended by officials from the airline and Mumbai airport operator GVK. Due to the current water crisis currently gripping the state of Maharashtra, Etihad Airways decided not to proceed with a customary water salute that typically marks the arrival of an airline’s first flight to an airport.
The choice of Maharashtra Day to launch the world’s largest passenger jet to India reinforced the airline’s commitment to the country, to meet an increase in demand for air services and to support growing trade and tourism in India.
With the aircraft upgrade, Etihad Airways is able to offer an all-A380 daily service in both directions between Mumbai and New York JFK International with a seamless connection over Abu Dhabi, along with the unique US customs border protection which enables guests to pre-clear US customs in Abu Dhabi. The service is operated as a codeshare flight with Etihad Airways’ strategic Indian partner Jet Airways.
More Info: Khaleejtimes