Air Arabia Affiliates Add Moscow, Medina Routes

Destinations in Russia and Saudi Arabia are set to be new points for Air Arabia Abu Dhabi and Air Arabia Egypt respectively.

Credit: ruelleruelle / Alamy Stock Photo

Air Arabia Abu Dhabi has scheduled the launch of a route to Moscow Domodedovo (DME), which will become the LCC’s first to Russia. The latest schedules show that flights will start on Nov. 18, operating five times per week from Abu Dhabi (AUH) using A320s.

The airline will become the second to offer a nonstop connection between Abu Dhabi and Moscow alongside Etihad Airways, which flies to Moscow Sheremetyevo (SVO) daily using 787-10s.

In August, Wizz Air Abu Dhabi also filed plans to resume its suspended Abu Dhabi-Moscow Vnukovo (VKO) on Oct. 3. However, the carrier pulled the flights shortly afterwards following a backlash on social media—although it said the decision to withdraw the service was because of “industry supply chain limitations.”

The United Arab Emirates, along with China and India, abstained in a United Nations Security Council vote in February to condemn Russia’s invasion of Ukraine. The country has a neutral position on the war and has not imposed sanctions.

Meanwhile, Air Arabia Egypt has announced the launch of new nonstop flights to the city of Medina in Saudi Arabia. The route will start on Oct. 31, connecting Alexandria’s Borg El Arab Airport (HBE) with Medina’s Prince Mohammed Bin Abdulaziz International (MED). Service will be twice a week on Mondays and Wednesdays using Airbus A320 aircraft.

“We are confident that the new service will further contribute to the overall travel and tourism sector of Egypt and Saudi Arabia through providing an affordable and value-driven travel option to passengers traveling between the two countries,” Air Arabia Group CEO Adel Al Ali said.

The latest route to Medina marks the 10th city that Air Arabia Egypt flies to in Saudi Arabia after Riyadh, Jeddah, Dammam, Tabuk, Taif, Al Jouf, Hail, Abha and Gassim.

Data provided by OAG Schedules Analyser shows that Air Arabia Egypt will face competition on the route from Egyptair, which currently operates three flights per week using Boeing 737-800s. Saudia also served the sector prior to the pandemic, but regular flights have been suspended since March 2020.