Etihad Airways will expand its network in South East Asia with the launch of a non-stop daily service between Abu Dhabi and Phuket.

Phuket is the largest island in Thailand and has emerged as one of the world’s most popular destinations for both holidays and retirement. Located in the Andaman Sea, tourists flock to the island for its pristine natural beaches and year-round sunshine.

The new route will launch on 26 October 2014 using two-class Airbus A330-200 aircraft, with 22 Pearl Business seats and 240 Coral Economy seats. The flights have been scheduled to provide optimal connectivity between Phuket and key markets across Europe and the GCC.

Phuket will become the second destination in Thailand to be served by Etihad Airways, and the seventh in South East Asia, alongside Bangkok, Singapore , Manila, Kuala Lumpur , Ho Chi Minh City and Jakarta.