Get to the airport well in time today – it’s very busy

By Angel Chan

Etihad Airways travel advice for spring school holidays

ABU DHABI 29 March 2019: The Spring Break commences at the end of this week with schools in the UAE breaking for holidays. This means many families will start flying out from Thursday 28 March and over the weekend, leading to a particularly busy time at Abu Dhabi Airport.

To ensure guests enjoy a convenient travel experience during this busy period, Etihad Airways has a number of travel tips and reminders to save time:

Early Check-in: For the convenience of those guests who live downtown, early check-in is also available at the Abu Dhabi City Terminal. Guests should arrive at Abu Dhabi International Airport at least three hours before take-off, accounting for extra road traffic.

Family Check-in: Each morning in Terminal 3, between 28 and 31 March, a dedicated ‘Family Check-in’ area will be available for guests travelling with young children and infants. Extra Etihad Airways staff will be available on site to provide assistance, and additional signage will ensure a seamless airport experience.

Check-in and Boarding Times: Economy Class check-in for non-US flights opens three hours before departure and closes one hour before departure. Guests travelling to destinations in the US must check in two hours before departure and present themselves at the US Customs and Border Protection facility no later than 90 minutes before departure. Boarding for all Etihad Airways departures closes 20 minutes prior to departure for guests in all classes.

Given the significant increase in demand for check-in on the first day of the school holidays, Etihad Airways will relocate check-in for the following flights on the morning of 29 and 30 March only to Terminal 1:

  • EY077 to Amsterdam (AMS) departure time 9:30 am
  • EY083 to Rome (FCO) departure time 9:20 am
  • EY297 to Baku (GYD) departure time 10:10 am
  • EY535 to Beirut (BEY) departure time 9:25 am
  • EY653 to Cairo (CAI) departure time 9:35 am
  • EY 657 to Cairo (CAI) departure time 9:45 pm
  • EY097 to Istanbul (IST) departure time 9:45 am

Etihad mobile app: With the Etihad Airways mobile app, guests can check in 49 hours before departure and download an electronic boarding pass for presentation at the bag drop and when boarding their flight. The app is free to download from the Apple App Store or Android Play and has a host of features including preferred seat selection and flight status page.

Online Check-in: Online check-in is also available on Etihad’s website, For those guests who have checked in on-line but are unable to print their boarding passes at home or the office, self-service kiosks are available in Terminals 1 and 3 to print their boarding passes prior to proceeding to the bag drop.

Smart Travel: When proceeding through departure immigration or upon return, Abu Dhabi Airport’s ‘Smart Travel’ immigration e-gates are available for registered UAE nationals and residents. Guests simply scan their passport and mobile or paper boarding pass at the e-gates and the immigration process will take a matter of seconds.

Etihad Baggage Policy: For the safety and comfort of all guests, Etihad Airways stringently enforces its cabin baggage policy of 7kg for Economy Class and 12kg for First and Business Class guests. Maximum Cabin Baggage dimensions are: Height 50 cm, Depth 25cm, Width 40cm. Staff will be checking the weight of cabin baggage at check-in at prior to boarding the aircraft.

Prior to proceeding to the airport, guests are reminded to check their e-ticket or the Etihad Airways website for the baggage policy related to their particular fare, destination or class of travel. The Etihad Airways website also offers a number of additional options for guests to pre-purchase additional baggage at special rates prior to departure.

Pre-purchase travel options: The Etihad Airways website also has a variety of pre-purchase seating and upgrade options for greater comfort while travelling during the holiday season. The ‘Extra Legroom Seats’ offer a generous space for guests to stretch their legs, while the ‘Preferred Seating’ option allows guests to choose a seat nearer the exit or just somewhere more private. There is also the innovative ‘Neighbour-free Seat’ option for guests to choose. Instant upgrades to Business or First Class are also available for purchase at special rates during check-in for guests looking to travel in additional comfort.

Access to Etihad Airways’ Abu Dhabi Airport Business Class lounges in Terminal’s 1 & 3 is also available for purchase by Economy Class guests at the lounge prior to departure. For those guests in Business Class, you can also purchase access to our First Class Lounge & Spa to experience an even more exclusive level of service and hospitality, before stepping on board your flight.

New real time flight tracking technology

Etihad has implemented the International Civil Aviation Organisation (ICAO) Global Aeronautical Distress and Safety System (GADSS) recommendations for flight tracking ahead of the General Civil Aviation Authority’s (GCAA’s) proposed deadline of 1 June 2019.

With an ICAO completion date of 8 November 2018, Etihad Airways not only met the GADSS recommendation of tracking its flights with position updates every 15 minutes under normal conditions, but also at the frequency of once-per minute when an aircraft is in distress – exceeding a component of ICAO’s 2021 requirements.

Etihad Guest members can use miles to bid on upgrades

Etihad Airways customers to now use Guest Miles as a form of payment to bid for a premium seat in a higher cabin.

The new function will give customers the choice to bid on their upgrades using miles in addition to the existing credit card option. Guests will be able to see real-time notifications of their bid displayed on their screen, allowing two or more individual bids at the same time. Regular email and SMS updates will also be sent to notify them of the status of their bid.

Etihad Guest members will receive an email invitation to bid for a one-cabin upgrade seven days prior to their flight, or they can visit the ‘Manage Your Booking’ page, or

The auction will take place from 48 to six hours prior to their flight’s departure. Once the auction closes, the successful winner will be notified immediately.

Etihad Airways Business Class Cabin

Bidding guests are encouraged to still check-in online up to 48 hours prior to departure on the Etihad Airways Mobile App or on via the Self Service Hub, as the optimised system will still process successful upgrades. If an upgrade offer is accepted, a new boarding pass will automatically be available on the Etihad Airways Mobile App or will be provided at check-in.

Future enhancements will enable Etihad Guest members to bid with their miles on Neighbour-Free seats as well as allowing guests to combine cash and miles for bidding.

Free luggage allowance for golfers

Etihad is welcoming golfers to Abu Dhabi’s courses, allowing them to bring their golf clubs free-of-charge, enhancing the city’s sporting credentials and improving the experience of every golfer who touches down in the capital.

Thousands of golfers fly in to Abu Dhabi annually to enjoy the fairways and greens that can be found across the city’s pristine courses. Etihad Airways is also the official airline partner for the Abu Dhabi HSBC Championship, run by the European Golf Association (EGA), and which takes place annually in the capital and it’s an event that attracts an audience of thousands as well as the stars of the golfing world.

Saadiyat Beach Golf Club

Golf plays a key role in Abu Dhabi’s tourism strategy, as golfers stay longer and spend around two and a half more days in the capital than the average tourist. Golfers often travel with their families, expanding the number of tourists that the city is able to attract. Etihad Airways’ golf allowance includes an additional golf bag containing one set of clubs, one pair of golf shoes, and a golf umbrella or parasol, which may be carried free of charge on Etihad Airways flights.


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