AIRBLUE LAUNCHES KARACHI — GAWADAR FLIGHTS
June 26 - July 02, 2006
Airblue's flight ED 702 landed at Gawadar Airport on Saturday Morning with a full load of passengers to mark the launch of Pakistan's fastest growing airlines seventh domestic destination and the introduction of its operations on the socio-economic routes. On board the first flight were Mr. Jalal Shah, Regional Director South, CAA, and Air Commodore (Rtd) Munawar Siddiqui, Chairman JS Air, Mr. Shahid Khaqan Abbasi, airblue's Chief Operating Officer and other dignitaries
The inaugural flight was received by members of the local administration headed by Mr. Ahmed Bux Zehri Director General Gawadar Development Authority, Civil Aviation and Airport Security Force Officials, and the newly appointed airblue Gawadar team.
The DG Gawadar Development Authority congratulated airblue on introducing flights to Gawadar and said that the addition of airblue to the local aviation scene would bring added value to the traveling public through a quality product at affordable prices.
Mr. Zehri hoped that airblue would soon be able to introduce international flights for the residents of Gawadar, especially catering to those who needed to travel to the United Arab Emirates and had limited options today.
Mr Jalal Shah, Regional Director (South), Civil Aviation Authority, complimented airblue for introducing flights to Gawadar and contributing to the development of the area.
He stated that the CM was concerned that air travelers to and from Gwadar should receive the best possible facilitation and therefore the CAA was expanding the existing airport premises to ensure convenient and comfortable facilities to the passengers -- to keep pace with the growth of air travel to and from that region.
A new airport was also being planned for Gwadar in the near future, the Regional Director added.
Earlier, airblue's Chief Operating Officer, Shahid Khaqan Abbasi, had pointed that the airline has launched the Gawadar destination to meet the needs of Pakistan's fastest growing port city with a population of over 1 lacs with a strong business base which was registering constant economic growth.
The COO of Airblue stated that airline had chartered 2 Beechcraft from JS Air to operate a commuter service on socio-economic routes. Initially Air blue will operate 6 flights a week to Gawadar and back. The volume of Flights would soon be increased with addition of another daily Flight to Gawadar and flights on other socio-economic routes.
Airblue now operates 3 daily Flights to Islamabad, 3 daily flights to Lahore, 1 daily Flight to Peshawar, 1 daily Flight to Quetta, 1 daily Flight to Faisalabad, and 6 Flights to Gawadar per week from Karachi; and on International sectors Airblue is operating 1 daily Flight from Karachi to Dubai, 1 daily flight from Lahore to Dubai, 3 flights a week from Islamabad to Dubai, and 4 flights a week from Peshawar to Dubai.
Airblue now operates over 180 flights per week, 138 Domestic and 42 international, with a fleet of 5 latest fly by wire technology Airbus A320 and A321 Aircraft and 2 latest technology Beechcraft 1 900C.
Airblue became the first private airline to fully comply with the National Aviation Policy 2000 and qualified for international routes as per CAA policy after completing a full year of successful operations. The Airline has already been granted permission by the Government of Pakistan to operate international flights to cities in the Gulf and to the United Kingdom.
Airblue is also starting flights to Manchester later this year with new-generation wide-body A330/A340 aircraft having a configuration of 30 Seats in Business Class and 248 Seats in Economy Class. These aircraft are equipped with the latest in IFE and passenger amenities.
It was also announced that recently Airblue has signed an aircraft acquisition deal with Airbus to procure Ten (10) Airbus A320 and A330 Aircraft in a landmark deal valued at US$ 790 Million. The new A320 aircraft will be used for additional frequencies and destinations on domestic and regional routes, while the new A330 aircraft will be used for the newly allocated routes to the United Kingdom.
Airblue has won the reputation of introducing many firsts within Pakistan's aviation industry since the start of its domestic flights in the year 2004; innovations such as 100% e-Ticketing, web based sales, a unique demand-based fare structure that allows competitive fares and deep discounts to passengers with flexible travel plans, wireless check-in devices, a paperless intra-company operating environment, and customer friendly service that have all gone towards making airblue a front-runner and the airline of choice in the Pakistan market.