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PIA starts new flight operations to the Saudi city, Abha

Pakistan International Airlines is set to begin operations to another Saudi city, Abha, in the Kingdom's Al-Qassim region.

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Pakistan International Airlines (PIA) on Monday, announced that it will begin new flight operations to and from the city of Abha in Saudi Arabia, as the demand of air travel was increasing by the Pakistanis living there.

PIA will operate two flights per week from Abha to Islamabad and Lahore, as ARY reports.

The national flag carrier got the approval for flights to the Kingdom’s region of Al Qassim  and Abha by Saudi Arabia’s General Authority of Civil Aviation (GACA) on the 5th of November.

A flight schedule has already been issued, the first flight on this route was from Multan, on the 18th of November. According to resources Airbus 320 will be operating on this route.

Read more: Askari Bank and PIA launch Co-Brand Credit Card

PIA adds 8 new aircraft to ‘modernize’ fleet

The Pakistan International Airlines (PIA) has decided to add eight new narrow-bodied airplanes to its fleet with a capacity of 170-plus. The 8 aircraft are expected to be delivered in the coming year. They will be acquired by a dry lease, which means that the airline will only acquire aircraft without any new staff. 

The new aircraft will be replacing existing airplanes in the fleet, this plan had been in the works for almost two years. The plan had been however delayed due to the first wave of the coronavirus pandemic.

According to PIA’s chief executive officer, Air Marshal Arshad Malik the new air fleet will be added to the current fleet of 37 aircraft, at latest by 2023, making it a fleet of 45. As per the PIA’s website, the airline has 37 aircraft, seven of which are Boeing 777s, nine Airbus-320’s and 21 ATRs.

PIA spokesman Abdullah Hafeez Khan said that the PIA is seeking to improve itself and modernize its fleet. The incumbent government had been seeking ways to revive the airline. Arshad Malik has back in July lauded the efforts by Prime Minister Imran Khan to reorganize the national airline.

Read more: PIA: Little known causes of downfall and the way forward

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