Coronavirus: Emirates and Etihad to restart flights from next week

Simon Calder
Emirates CEO says airline has received approval to fly again: Getty Images

The UAE flight ban, which left tens of thousands of travellers stranded when it was introduced at short notice, is to be eased – but at first only for passengers outbound from Dubai and Abu Dhabi.

The biggest international hub on the planet, Dubai Airport, was closed to flights on Emirates and other airlines – as was Abu Dhabi, home to Etihad.

Rival carrier Qatar Airways has picked up thousands of passengers abandoned by those airlines.

But Sheikh Ahmed bin Saeed Al Maktoum, CEO and chairman of the Emirates Group, has tweeted: “Emirates has received approval from UAE authorities to start flying a limited number of passenger flights.

“From 6 April, these flights will initially carry travellers outbound from the UAE. Details will be announced soon. Looks forward to the gradual resumption of passenger services in line with lifting of travel and operational restrictions, including assurance of health measures to safeguard our people and customers.”

It is believed that Etihad will start up a few days later.

Neither carrier is showing flight availability for the days on and immediately after 6 April at the moment.

The Independent is seeking a response from both airlines

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