DUBAI, UAE – In an initiative to support the development of the Seychelles tourism sector, Emirates will increase services between Dubai and the archipelago to seven flights per week, starting November 4, 2010.
In this context, a memorandum of understanding (MOU) highlighting joint promotional activities in the Middle East was signed today between the Dubai-based airline and the Seychelles Tourism Board in Dubai, in the presence of Jean Paul Adam, Minister of Foreign Affairs of the Republic of Seychelles.
The additional flight will operate on Thursdays and increase existing capacity by 16 percent per week, per direction, making it easier for leisure travelers, especially tourists from the Middle East, to visit the popular getaway.
Flight EK 705 will depart Dubai at 0230 hours and will arrive in Seychelles at 0700 hours. On the return journey, flight EK 706 will depart Seychelles at 0830, arriving in Dubai at 1300 hours. The service is operated by an Airbus A340–500 aircraft, offering 12 seats in First class, 42 seats in Business Class, and 258 seats in Economy.
Majid Al Mualla, Emirates’ senior vice president, Commercial Operations, West Asia & Indian Ocean, said: “With the increase in frequency, which took place in February, this is the third additional flight we are introducing on the Seychelles route this year. This is a clear indication of our trust in the tourism industry of the Seychelles and demonstrates that all our marketing efforts are bearing their fruits.”
Mr. Al Mualla added: “We are active partners of the Seychelles. We are taking the commitment to enhance our efforts to promote the archipelago further in the Middle East region. Hand in hand with the Seychelles Tourism Board, we are confident to bring even better results. We wish to thank the government of the Republic Of Seychelles for their trust in Emirates.”
Alain St. Ange, chief executive officer of the Seychelles Tourism Board and eTurboNews ambassador, stated: “The Seychelles Tourism Board values the support it has been receiving with Emirates airline, which has now clearly established Dubai as a hub for the Seychelles. The MOU presently being signed between Emirates airline and the Seychelles Tourism Board will consolidate this working partnership and will bring about results that will benefit both Emirates and the Seychelles.”
Mr. St. Ange added: “Emirates has shown that it is a trusted and serious partner for Seychelles, especially at this time when Seychelles is forging its visibility program in the Middle East. The friendly ties that exist between the Middle East Block and the Seychelles can only be strengthened with the signature of the MOU between Emirates and the Seychelles Tourism Board.”
Various initiatives to promote travel to the archipelago have taken place during the year. This includes the launch of special packages to the Seychelles in markets such as the United Arab Emirates, Bahrain, Qatar, Oman, Kuwait, Saudi Arabia, Lebanon, Jordan, Greece, and Turkey. Furthermore, a press trip comprising journalists from the Middle East visited the Seychelles in April, courtesy of Emirates Holidays.
From the start of its operations to Seychelles in January 2005, Emirates has promoted the island destination throughout its network. Every year, Emirates Holidays’ brochure – A World of Choice – dedicates a prominent part to the destination.
In 2009, 157,541 tourists visited the Seychelles, with the leading markets being France, Italy, Germany, UK, South Africa, and Russia.
For Seychelles travelers, the additional frequency will provide more flexibility to Dubai and to the global network of the airline, representing more than 100 destinations around the world.