Etihad Airways is testing a new hand baggage-only ‘Deal Fare’ on two key routes this winter season, for bookings between 18th October and 18th December, allowing travellers to purchase lower cost seats in Economy Class if no checked baggage is required.
The trial fare includes a complimentary carry-on baggage allowance of 7kg and is available on flights between Abu Dhabi, Bahrain and Kuwait for travel until 31st March 2018.
Etihad Airways Executive Vice President – Commercial, Mohammad Al Bulooki, said, "Passenger feedback and travel habits show that many of Etihad Airways’ customers, especially those travelling for business, weekend getaways or day trips, don’t require checked baggage, so we are testing a new lower fare on these key routes.
"As well as a great proposition for customers, this trial is an effective tool for gauging customer reaction in the real world and testing the product’s viability for wider implementation."
This is the first of many trials the airline plans to initiate over coming months, as it looks to increase customer choice and diversify its revenues in line with digital capabilities that enable the airline to customise its products and services according to consumer demand. It follows the successful implementation of several new ancillary products including extra legroom seats, neighbour-free seats and preferred seating.
"Etihad Airways is enhancing its product offerings to align with customer feedback, offering more choice onboard," Al Bulooki said.
"Customers have been able to purchase extra legroom seats for the last two years, and we recently gave them the additional choice through our ‘neighbour-free’ seat product to reserve the seat next to them on the aircraft at a reasonable fee. We know there is an appetite for products that allow travellers to choose the experience and service they require.
"While our core customer proposition remains centred on offering industry-leading service and hospitality, this trial is designed to provide an option for those who are looking for cheaper fares when travelling light," he added.