Coronavirus: Emirates to launch transfer services to 16 new cities from June 15

This will take the number of destinations in the airline's current network up to 29

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Emirates will offer transfer flights to 16 more cities from Monday, June 15, in line with the UAE Federal Government's decision to lift restrictions on transit services.

These transit services will connect destinations around the globe, but not all flights can be booked outbound from Dubai yet.

This will take the number of destinations in the airline's current network up to 29.

Using its Boeing 777-300ER aircraft, the airline will now offer transit services to Bahrain, Manchester, Zurich, Vienna, Amsterdam, Copenhagen, Dublin, New York JFK, Seoul, Kuala Lumpur, Singapore, Jakarta, Taipei, Hong Kong, Perth and Brisbane. The National has reached out to Emirates for more information on when these destinations will be bookable as an outbound flight from Dubai, rather than as a transit via Dubai connecting other destinations.

The aviation business is at a critical ... state at the moment and needs all the help it can get

In addition, from Monday, June 8, Emirates will offer flights from Karachi, Lahore and Islamabad for travellers from Pakistan who wish to connect to other Emirates destinations.

Customers can book to fly between destinations in the Asia Pacific region and Europe or the Americas, with a connection in Dubai, as long as they meet the travel and immigration entry requirements of their destination country.

This comes after Emirates airline president Tim Clark on Monday urged governments to take immediate action to restart aviation.

“It is important that governments understand – I am sure they are aware of other priorities in their economies – but this [the aviation] business is at a critical and very fragile state at the moment and it needs all the help it can get,” Clark said at the Arabian Travel Market, which was held by video conference, on Monday.

For services that are bookable from Dubai, the airline resumed regular passenger flights to nine destinations – London, Frankfurt, Paris, Milan, Madrid, Chicago, Toronto, Sydney and Melbourne – from May 21, the first regular, non-repatriation flights out of Dubai since March 24.

It has also opened bookings for flights to 12 Arab countries from July.

Etihad Airways will also launch a new transfer service linking 20 cities in Europe, Asia and Australia, via Abu Dhabi, from Wednesday, June 10. The Abu Dhabi airline has specified these transit flights are an extension of its "special services".

The decision to resume transit flights through the UAE comes after the completion of a safety study by experts from the Ministry of Health and Prevention and the General Civil Aviation Authority.

Saif Al Dhaheri, a spokesman for the National Crisis and Emergency Management Authority, said comprehensive measures have been put in place to protect passengers and airline staff at every stage of their journey.

A family walks at Dubai International Airport, as Emirates airline resumed limited outbound passenger flights amid outbreak of the coronavirus disease (COVID-19) in Dubai, UAE April 27, 2020. REUTERS/Ahmed Jadallah
Dubai International Airport has resumed limited outbound passenger flights amid outbreak of the coronavirus. Reuters  

"Airport staff across the country have been thoroughly trained on precautionary measures, including the screening of passengers and dealing with suspected cases," said Al Dhaheri, who added that the move was "a new positive step in the gradual restoration of normal life".