Etihad Airways, the national airline of the United Arab Emirates, together with its code-share partner, Bangkok Airways, Asia’s Boutique Airline, announces the launch of new services to Brisbane, Australia, from Bangkok and Koh Samui, marking a highly exciting development for Etihad Airways and its guests in Thailand and Australia.

Under the agreement, the Abu Dhabi-based airline will place its two-letter ‘EY’ code on Bangkok Airways’ flights from Bangkok and Koh Samui to Singapore, which operates three times a week on Wednesday, Fridays and Sundays. The onward service from Singapore to Brisbane is operated by Etihad Airways, and arrives in Queensland’s capital the following morning. This announcement is part of Etihad’s continuous plan to expand its global network, and offer convenience for guests travelling between the two countries, and onwards.

Cramer Ball, Etihad Airways’ Regional General Manager Asia Pacific South and Australasia, says: “Thailand is an important market for Etihad and there is huge demand amongst our guests to travel beyond the Thai capital, which this extended code-share agreement now allows”

“The new route from Koh Samui to Brisbane shaves two hours off the journey, making our codeshare service the market’s fastest and most convenient. We are expecting the new services to be extremely popular, particularly with students and leisure travellers looking for the best access to Australia,” concluded Cramer Ball.

Etihad flight EY 7721 (operated by Bangkok Airways) operates three times per week on Wednesdays, Fridays and Sundays, departing Bangkok at 2:45pm, then leaving from Koh Samui at 4:30pm and arriving in Singapore at 7:20pm the same day. This flight connects with Etihad’s Singapore-Brisbane service EY 470 which departs Singapore at 11:15pm and arrives in Brisbane at 9:05am the next morning.

On the return, Etihad Airways flight EY473 departs Brisbane three times per week on Mondays, Thursdays and Saturdays at 12:25pm, arriving in Singapore at 6:25pm. It connects with codeshare flight EY 7722 (operated by Bangkok Airways) departing Singapore at 8:10pm, arriving in Koh Samui at 9:00pm and Bangkok at 11:05.

Travelling as a Pearl Business Guest with Etihad is an uplifting experience. Etihad offers truly personal service throughout the journey. Guests can sit back and enjoy all that goes into making a great flight—luxurious seating, extensive entertainment options, ambient mood lighting, signature cuisine, and chauffeur service to and from Brisbane Airport (within a 60km radius). This new service also provides more opportunities for members of Etihad Guest and Virgin Blue Velocity members to earn and redeem miles, and to take full advantage of the benefits of the Etihad/Virgin Blue Partnership.

Etihad Guest members will earn tier miles on both the Bangkok/Koh Samui-Singapore and the Singapore-Brisbane service. Guests travelling from Bangkok to Brisbane return in Coral Economy Class, will earn 9,414 Guest miles. Guests travelling in Pearl Business class will earn 14,121 miles. Etihad Guest Miles can be redeemed as little as one mile instantly through the Etihad Rewards Shop or built over time to enable guests to book free flights, upgrades and more. Return fares in Coral Economy start from only THB29,080 and in Pearl Business from THB97,000.

All guests will be able to enjoy the comfort of the Bangkok Airways boutique lounges in Bangkok and Koh Samui prior to boarding the code-share flight to Singapore. Thailand immigration formalities will also be completed in Koh Samui for all passengers. Guests in Pearl Business Class will also enjoy transfers to and from Brisbane Airport.