It’s a great time to travel, or so the UAE airlines would have us believe, offering bargain basement airfares for spontaneous travel.
Dubai-based Emirates Airline and Abu Dhabi-based Etihad Airways, two of the UAE’s largest full-service airlines, are offering budget carrier rates to prop up travel during the pre-summer holidays lull period.
While Emirates is offering return flights to GCC cities starting at as low as Dh590, Etihad is currently offering return tickets from Dubai, Abu Dhabi and Al Ain, starting just Dh510 as part of its 96-hour sale, which ends this evening.
This rock-bottom rate of Dh510 being offered by Etihad Airways, for travelling full service between Dubai/Abu Dhabi and Muscat (Oman), is in direct competition with the lowest fare of Dh500 that budget carrier Air Arabia is charging to fly a passenger between Sharjah and Muscat.
Emirates, on the other hand, is charging a minimum of Dh590 for the same two destinations, while Dubai’s budget carrier flydubai is offering a fare of Dh472 for the return journey between Dubai and Muscat.
Among the other sub-Dh2,000 fares that Dubai’s Emirates is offering at the moment include travel to other Middle Eastern destinations (barring GCC), with return airfares starting Dh1,270, Africa starting Dh1,500, India starting Dh1,570, and Europe starting Dh1,920.
The catch here is that the outbound travel should be completed on or before May 31, 2012, leaving just about a week from now for travelers to make up their mind.
In the case of Etihad, the sale ends tonight (May 23, 2012), and travelers need to complete their return travel by June 14, 2012. Etihad is offering the sale prices for about 40 of its destinations.
The slash in fares coincides with Dubai Department of Tourism and Marketing’s (DTCM) ‘Do More in Dubai’ campaign, which encourages travel to Dubai in the summer months.