Qatar sells World Cup packages

December 29, 2017 by  
Filed under Events, Middle east, Travel Deals

DOHA, 29 December 2017:  Qatar Airways and Qatar Airways Holidays, are offering travel packages including flights, hotels and official match tickets to the 2018 FIFA World Cup Russia.

The football extravaganza will take place 14 June to 15 July 2018.

The range of travel packages covers all group matches as well as the semi-finals and final. Read more

Morocco’s national airline buys Dreamliners

December 29, 2017 by  
Filed under Aviation, Middle east, News

RABAT, Morocco, 29 December 2017:  Royal Air Maroc has ordered four 787-9 Dreamliner aircraft from US aviation giant Boeing for delivery at the end of next year, the two companies said Wednesday.

The new aircraft, worth USD1.1 billion at list price, would allow the flagship carrier “to expand its services, especially internationally”, a Boeing statement said.

The delivery “at the end of 2018” would bring to 60 the number of planes in the airline’s fleet, an official at the Moroccan flagship carrier told AFP. Read more

Tunisia suspends Emirates flights

December 27, 2017 by  
Filed under Aviation, Middle east, News

TUNIS, 27 December 2017: Tunisia earlier this week suspended Emirates Airlines flights after a public outcry over security measures in the United Arab Emirates targeting women from the North African country.

The transport ministry said it had “decided to suspend” Emirates flights to Tunis “until the airline is able to find the appropriate solution to operate its flights in accordance with international law and agreements”.

An Emirates Airlines spokesperson confirmed to AFP: “Emirates will stop services between Tunis and Dubai, as instructed by the Tunisian authorities, with effect from 25 December 2017.” Read more

Etihad to bump up Maldives flights

December 21, 2017 by  
Filed under Aviation, Middle east, News

ABU DHABI, 21 December 2017: Etihad Airways will launch four additional weekly flights from Abu Dhabi to Malé increasing services to 11 weekly to the Maldives, effective June next year.

The extra flights, effective 15 June 2018, will operate year-round and provide more travel options with an early morning arrival in the Maldives.

Overall connectivity and timing options between the Maldives and key countries on Etihad Airways’ European network will be improved. These include the major markets of the UK, Germany, France, Italy and Russia. Read more

Saudi Arabia will issue tourist visas

December 20, 2017 by  
Filed under Middle east, News

RIYADH, Saudi Arabia, 20 December 2017: Saudi Arabia will begin issuing tourist visas in the first quarter of 2018, its top tourism official said, a first for the kingdom as it undergoes major economic and social reforms.

Prince Sultan bin Salman bin Abdulaziz told AFP that “all government approvals” are in place for the launch of electronic visas next year to “all nationals whose countries allow their citizens to visit” the Gulf state.

“We are now just preparing the regulations — who is eligible for the visas and how to obtain them,” added the head of the Saudi Commission for Tourism and National Heritage, who is a son of King Salman. Read more

Former Israeli tourism minister jailed

December 19, 2017 by  
Filed under Middle east, News

JERUSALAM, 19 December 2017: A former Israeli minister on Sunday started serving a 15-month jail sentence for fraud and breach of trust, judicial sources said.

Stas Misezhnikov, who was tourism minister from 2009 to 2013, was sentenced to prison in October for handing one million shekels (USD280,000) in financial support to a student festival, while securing a job at the event for a woman with whom he had an intimate relationship.

Misezhnikov starts serving time as public pressure increases to demand legal action against “corrupt” officials and Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu himself faces two separate graft probes. Read more

Russia to resume Egypt flights

December 18, 2017 by  
Filed under Aviation, Middle east, News

MOSCOW, 18 December 2017: Flights between Russia and Egypt will resume in February, the Russian transport ministry announced, Friday, after they were suspended in 2015 following an airliner bombing claimed by the Islamic State group.

Russian transport minister Maksim Sokolov and Egyptian civil aviation minister Sherif Fathy signed an agreement on aviation security that “is the first step for the resumption of flights between our countries,” the Moscow ministry said.

Sokolov said flights between Moscow and Cairo would restart in February 2018 pending internal procedures, in comments echoed by the Egyptian minister. Read more

Dubai splashes out on Expo

December 13, 2017 by  
Filed under Middle east, News

DUBA, 13 December 2017: Dubai has adopted its 2018 budget foreseeing expenditure of 56.6 million dirhams (around USD15.5 billion), a 19.5% increase over last year, as it prepares to host Expo 2020.

But the 2018 budget of Dubai, one of seven emirates in the United Arab Emirates, also forecasts a deficit of USD1.7 billion — the highest since the 2009 financial crisis, a government statement said.

“Dubai’s commitment to Expo excellence, and to UAE’s leading status on the international scene has led to approving a budget with an AED 6.2 billion deficit,” Abdulrahman Saleh Al Saleh, who heads Dubai’s government finance department, said. Read more

Etihad adds second flight to Jordan

December 8, 2017 by  
Filed under Aviation, Middle east, News

ABU DHABI, 8 December 2017: Etihad Airways will launch a second daily flight between Abu Dhabi and Amman, effective 25 March 2018.

The double daily year-round schedule will provide greater choice to local passengers travelling between Abu Dhabi and Amman, with attractive timings of late morning and evening departures from the capital cities of the UAE and Jordan, respectively.

The additional flight, operated by an Airbus A320 with 16 seats in business class and 120 in economy, will also improve connectivity over Abu Dhabi to a wider network of destinations across Asia and the Indian Subcontinent. Read more

Dubai set for second Raffles

December 7, 2017 by  
Filed under Hospitality, Middle east, News

CANNES, France,7 December 2017: AccorHotels signed a management agreement with Dubai-based master developer, Nakheel, to brand a new-build hotel in Dubai as  a Raffles Hotels & Resorts.

The signing ceremony was held, earlier this week,  at the International Luxury Travel Market (ILTM) in Cannes.

Nakheel is developing PALM360, a twin-tower development on the world famous Palm Jumeirah. It will feature the Raffles The Palm Dubai Hotel and Raffles Residences PALM360. Read more

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