Düsseldorf Airport’s CEO Christoph Blume and Etihad Airways’ CCO Peter Baumgartner cut the ribbon for Etihad’s new service to Düsseldorf – notably a hub airport for the airline’s partner airberlin. (Photos: Andreas Wiese)
On arrival in the Chinese panda city of Chengdu, Etihad’s crew were greeted with toy pandas. The airline’s CEO James Hogan travelled along on the inaugural flight and met with the Governor of Chengdu.
- Etihad launched two new routes from its Abu Dhabi (AUH) hub in the last week; one to Asia and one to Europe. On 15 December, the Gulf carrier began serving Chengdu (CTU), the capital of Sichuan Province in China. This is notably the first route between the Middle East and Chengdu. The only other intercontinental service at the airport is KLM’s Amsterdam route. The following day, the airline added its third German airport to its network. Düsseldorf (DUS) now follows Frankfurt and Munich. Notably, Düsseldorf is a base airport for airberlin, the partner airline in which Etihad just has agreed to increase its shareholding. This makes Etihad the second ‘MEB3’ carrier to serve Düsseldorf after Emirates. Each of Etihad’s two new routes is operated four times weekly; the Chengdu service with 262-seat A330-200 aircraft and Düsseldorf with 231-seat A330-300s. However, the Düsseldorf service increases to daily frequencies at the start of the summer season next year.