Emirates has announced a third route to the Indian state of Kerala, a week after UAE-based Air Arabia said it would launch a similar service.
The Dubai-based airline will begin a six-weekly service to the south Indian city of Kozhikode (Calicut) starting on 1st July 2008, in what will be the second of eight new route announcements this year.
Sharjah-based Air Arabia, the Middle East's biggest low-cost airline, said earlier this month that Kozhikode would become its tenth service when it starts tomorrow, and that it plans to add between four and five destinations this year.
Kozhikode will become Emirates’ 10th destination in India, following the introduction of services to Kochi in 2002 and Thiruvananthapuram in 2006.
“Kozhikode and the state of Kerala have a long-standing trade relationship with the Arabian peninsula that extends back into history,” said HH Sheikh Ahmed bin Saeed Al-Maktoum, Chairman and CEO of Emirates Airline and Group in a statement.
“We are delighted to be able to provide a non-stop air link between Dubai and Kozhikode, which will help increase trade opportunities, and also make it more convenient for the large non-resident Indian community in the Gulf to visit their families and friends."
On the Dubai-Kozhikode route, Emirates will initially operate its Boeing 777-200 and Airbus A330-200 aircraft, offering over 4,000 Business and Economy class seats and close to 200 tonnes of cargo capacity per week in both directions.
Emirates to launch new Kerala route