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Emirates advances in west Asia

Sri Lanka
Sri Lanka
Written by editor

Effective today Emirates airline will step up its presence in west Asia with additional services to Colombo and Malé from its home base in Dubai.

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Effective today Emirates airline will step up its presence in west Asia with additional services to Colombo and Malé from its home base in Dubai. The expansion also signals the resumption of Emirates’ flights on the Malé -Colombo route.

In all, Emirates will add four flights to Colombo and five to Malé, bringing its total frequency to 18 flights per week to Sri Lanka and 14 flights per week to the Maldives.

EK 654 will operate a circular route, Dubai-Malé-Colombo-Dubai, every Monday, Wednesday, and Friday using a modern Airbus A330 aircraft in a three-class configuration of 12 first-, 42 business-, and 183 economy-class seats.

Emirates will also introduce an additional direct connection between Dubai and Colombo every Friday on EK 650 and another two connections between Dubai and Malé on Wednesday and Friday with EK 658. These services will be operated with the technologically-advanced Boeing 777 series of aircraft offering 12 first-, 42 business-, and 310 economy-class seats.

The additional services will offer passengers the convenience of morning, afternoon, and evening departures.

Majid Al Mualla, Emirates vice president, commercial operations, west Asia and Indian Ocean noted: “The introduction of over 1,800 seats (per week per direction) on the two routes will be welcomed by business, leisure, and student travelers. Business and student travelers from Sri Lanka can take advantage of the extra flights that seamlessly connect to onward points in North America and Europe via Dubai. At the same time, the enhanced capacity offers convenient connections to Sri Lanka’s burgeoning expatriate population working in the Middle East and traveling home all year round.

“There are expectations that tourist traffic into Sri Lanka will improve during the winter season of 2009. In line with this expectation, local authorities are already considering improvements in the tourism infrastructure. By introducing additional services and promoting these across our robust international network, Emirates is supporting the local government’s campaign to revive Sri Lanka’s tourism industry.”

Mr. Al Mualla added: “Our extra flights will grow the tourism potential of Maldives – a popular getaway for leisure travelers from Europe and the Middle East. Furthermore, the resumption of services between Malé and Colombo will encourage inbound tourists to opt for a two-destination holiday. It will also benefit Maldivians visiting Sri Lanka for medical treatment, cultural tourism, education, and shopping.”

Flight Schedule:

Flight No. Day of operation Depart Time Arrive Time

EK 654 Mon., Wed., Fri. Dubai 10:20 Malé 15:25
EK 654 Mon., Wed., Fri. Malé 16:50 Colombo 18:50
EK 654 Mon., Wed., Fri. Colombo 20:10 Dubai 22:55

EK 650 Fri. Dubai 02:45 Colombo 08:45
EK 651 Fri. Colombo 10:05 Dubai 12:50

EK 658 Wed., Fri. Dubai 03:25 Malé 08:30
EK 659 Wed., Fri. Malé 09:55 Dubai 12:55

*All times local.

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Editor in chief is Linda Hohnholz.