Emirates to launch services to Penang via Singapore

By TMR / Pic By BLOOMBERG

EMIRATES yesterday announced its plan to launch a new daily service from Dubai to Penang, via Singapore, from April 9.

Emirates’ flight to Penang will be a linked service with Singapore, allowing passengers to travel easily between the two cities while enjoying the airline’s service. Penang will become Emirates’ second destination in Malaysia after its capital, Kuala Lumpur (KL), which the airline currently serves with three flights a day and is a route that has been operating since 1996. The new route will provide direct access for Singaporean travellers to travel to the popular destination of Penang.

The flight will be operated by an Emirates Boeing 777-300ER aircraft in a three-class configuration, offering eight private suites in first class, 42 lie flat seats in business class and 304 seats in economy class.

The new route enables travellers from the northern cities of Malaysia to enjoy convenient onward connections from Dubai to destinations in Europe, North America and the Middle East.

The flights will operate with timings as follows (local times):
• EK348 from Dubai to Singapore departs at 2.30am and arrives at 2.05pm; from Singapore to Penang at 3.35pm and arrives at 5.15pm.
• EK349 flies from Penang to Singapore at 10.20pm and arrives at 11.50pm, and from Singapore to Dubai at 1.40am and arrives at 4.55am.

Known as Malaysia’s food capital, Penang is well-renowned for its rich heritage, architecture and the natural beauty of its beaches and hills. It is also home to a Unesco World Heritage Site and a variety of tourist attractions. Besides its appeal to tourists, Penang is also an economic powerhouse, attracting business travellers from around the globe.

The introduction of flights to Penang provides accessibility and connectivity to more destinations within Malaysia for both leisure and business travellers.

Emirates chief commercial officer Adnan Kazim said Penang is a major centre for tourism, business travel and medical tourism and the increased levels of inbound travel is consistent with the growth in numbers of visitors to the country.

“We have been serving Malaysia through our flights to KL for more than 20 years, with a three-time daily service. The introduction of flights to Penang will help us meet growing demand from leisure and business travellers, both to and from Malaysia.

“We are also pleased that the fifth freedom flights between Penang and Singapore will connect two sister cities and increase connectivity for passengers in South- East Asia,” he added.

Customers across all cabin classes can look forward to industry- leading features and levels of comfort when travelling with Emirates from its multinational cabin crew, including Malaysian nationals, to enjoying over 4,500 channels of audio and visual entertainment from the latest movies, music and games on its ice system and regionally inspired meals and complimentary beverages.

Families are also well catered for with dedicated products and services to enable hassle-free travel with children.

Emirates manager for Malaysia Mohammad Al Attar said: “Malaysia is one of our strongest markets in the region. We are excited to be able to introduce new air connectivity between Malaysia and Dubai in the United Arab Emirates.

“This is a great opportunity for Malaysians from Penang and surrounding cities to experience Dubai and to connect to other global destinations. It will also provide a great opportunity for Emirates to contribute to the growing inbound travel from Dubai to Malaysia. We have grown from strength to strength since our partnership with Malaysia began in 1996 and hope that we continue to serve Malaysians for many years to come.”

The new service will also enable Emirates SkyCargo, the cargo division of Emirates, to offer up to 15 tonnes of cargo capacity on the flight, giving local businesses the opportunity to increase their exports such as electronic products and components including semiconductors, laptops and other consumer products; spare parts for other industries including aviation, oil and gas and renewable energy.

Frequently imported commodities to Malaysia include pharmaceuticals, fashion goods, perishable goods including food items and fresh flowers. The route will also support import and export opportunities for Singapore, connecting the world through Dubai and between Singapore and Penang.

Emirates SkyCargo has been facilitating trade between Malaysia and the rest of the world since 1996.

During the last financial year, the carrier transported close to 23,000 tonnes of cargo on the route to and from KL, 17% up from the previous year.