Wednesday, June 19, 2013

Flydubai: From a Low Cost to a Hybrid Airline

Flydubai is introducing a Business Class (click here for full story) as of October 2013 with a soft start on selected flights in August 2013 after the delivery of its first two (2) class aircraft. A twelve (12) seats at 42 inches pitch dedicated cabin with 900 hours of IFE on a 12.1 inches HD touch screen. A full Business Class service with a lounge, dedicated check in, priority baggage collection and other amenities. Flydubai just changed its business model from a low cost carrier to a hybrid if not legacy airline following in the footsteps of Bahrain Air. Who will bear the cost of this offering remains to be seen. Are we looking at a low cost business model? not really looking at what Flydubai is offering.

The reason for the change, passenger feedback!!! Ah well, why would a passenger looking for low fares want to pay for a Business Class service. I guess some passengers wanting to interline with Emirates flying in Business would want that.

To put things in context, Flydubai and Emirates passengers can book flights that start with one airline and continue on the other (interline) on either website. Passengers and luggage are transferred from one terminal to the other free of charge.

The main beneficiary of this change is Emirates, they will get additional Business Class feed from the growing network (now at 60 destinations) of Flydubai especially destinations not served by Emirates into theirs. I am sure there will be some schedule tweaking  from these destinations to optimize connecting times.

Dubai has always evolved and Flydubai should not be any different. Only time will tell how this move will impact costs at Flydubai and to a certain extent Emirates.

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