Published on January 19, 2008
Oamn Air's first non-stop service from Muscat to Bangkok.
The launch of the new service to the Thai capital, the airline's first destination in Southeast Asia, took place on November 28 and the official inaugural ceremony was held last week in Bangkok.
The Omani carrier operates five direct flights a week to Suvarnabhumi Airport. The new service comes at a time of rapid growth of the airline, which aims to continue its expansion strategy both in terms of number of destinations and flights over the next five years.
Head of corporate communication and media Usama Karim Ahmed Al Haremi said that the new service was the first long haul direct flight between the two friendly nations.
"Bangkok is one of the new destinations for the Omani people, who travel to Thailand for medical treatment as well as for tourism. The latest statistics show the number of Omanis who visited Bangkok last year amounted to 38,000. The new service also aims to increase economic relations between the two countries, in both business and tourist traffic," he said.
Al Haremi noted the boom in passenger traffic through the new Suvarnabhumi Airport was the key factor in the airline's decision to select Bangkok as its first hub in Southeast Asia. However, Oman Airline will be increasing its presence in Southeast Asia over the new few years, starting with the introduction of services to Kuala Lumpur in May.
Also in November, the carrier launched its new flight to London Gatwick, its first destination in Europe.
Oman Air's mission is to become one of the leading regional airlines in the Middle East, said senior sales manager Abdulrazaq J Airaisi, adding that the company currently operates a 15-aircraft fleet. The service from Muscat to Bangkok is currently assured by Boeing 737-800.
The future fleet will consist of 12 Boeing 737-800 and seven Airbus A330 aircraft with deliveries starting in 2009. Omar Air has also committed to six Boeing 787 Dreamliners, which are expected to be delivered to the carrier in 2012, 2014 and 2015.
"The airline is moving to provide a service with the latest aircraft offering the latest in-flight entertainment systems. With its ambitious growth plan, Oman Air also aims to start a major restructuring and rebranding initiative in the near future," said Airaisi.
Founded in 1993, Oman Air is currently operating direct international flights from Muscat to Abu Dhabi, Dubai, Bahrain, Doha, Kuwait, Cairo, Beirut, Amman, Jeddah, and Riyadh in the Middle East. It also offers direct flights to many destinations in India, among them Bombay, New Delhi, Kochi, Hyderabad, Trivandrum, Chennai, Lucknow and Jaipur as well as to Karachi and to Chittagong in Bangladesh, Domestic flights link Muscat with Khasab and Salalah.