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Turkish Airlines

Turkish Airlines plans to begin flights between Istanbul and Sydney next year, with Melbourne to follow, airline CEO Temel Kotil has confirmed to Australian Business Traveller.

The flights are slated to take off in the northern summer, “in June”, Kotil said. “We are coming, and that’s final.”

Singapore, Bangkok, Jakarta and even the Maldives – all currently served by Turkish Airlines – are shortlisted as the stopover cities, with Turkish abandoning hopes of a non-stop flight of some 17 hours.

However, Kotil says a cap imposed by aviation authorities on flights between Turkey and Australia would prevent the airline running a daily schedule.

“Under the current arrangement we can (fly to) Sydney three times a week only, and Melbourne could be twice a week only” Kotil said, on the sidelines of a gathering of Star Alliance airline CEOs in Warsaw.

“We are asking the authorities to make them daily, because less than daily doesn’t make sense. Hopefully by next summer, the civil evaluation (authorities) will have solved the problem and we can be daily to Sydney, and Melbourne will follow.”

Kotil did not reveal if the route would be flown by the airline’s flagship Boeing 777-300ER.

Regarded as one of Europe’s best airlines, Turkish Airlines has previously been cautious about the impact of the Qantas-Emirates partnership on its long-wished-for Sydney-Istanbul flights, but “demand for Australia to Turkey is very high” Kotil says.

Both routes aim to deliver travellers within one flight of most European cities, although Turkish Airlines’ Istanbul hub would call for significantly shorter hops than Dubai.

TURKISH AIRLINES logoStar Alliance member, and called the Best Airline in Europe for the fifth consecutive year, continues its expansion in Austria as well.

Turkish Airlines’ 275th destination in 110 countries is Graz (Austria).

With existing services to Vienna and Salzburg, Turkish Airlines has added flights to Graz as its 3rd destination in Austria.

Beginning from today, roundtrip flights between Istanbul and Graz will be operated 4 times per week on Mondays, Wednesdays, Thursdays and Saturdays in both directions.

Turkish Airlines (THY) has increased the number of flights from Edinburgh to Istanbul.

Gordon Dewar, Edinburgh Airport CEO, expressed his pleasure with flights from Edinburgh to Istanbul everyday saying, “We are very pleased that THY increased the number of flights from Edinburgh in less than 1 year.”

Celebrations were made in Scotland with Scots’ traditional instrument bagpipes as the flights were extended.

THY Edinburgh Director Serhat Sari spoke to AA in Stirling saying, “We have extended our capacity a hundred per cent in less than 1 year by increasing the number of flights to 7 from 4.”

Sari said they were satisfied with the demand for new flights in Scotland adding THY has been growing so fast.

“We now fly to 223 places. The more places we fly the more advantageous it is for our transition quality,” said Sari adding, “With the flights carried out every day, we will supply the travellers with better transition flights offering them more options.”

Pointing out the population of Turkish people in Edinburgh is not as dense as in the other regions of UK, Sari said most of the travellers from Edinburgh to Istanbul were Scots.

Sari also added the flights between two cities would contribute positively to the cultural and economic relations between two countries.

What is more, Turkey is expected to establish a consulate in Edinburgh this year.

Turkish Airlines will begin flying Istanbul-KL flights with 3 flights a week beginning April 25.

The carrier said on Thursday the frequencies would be increased to four flights per week on June 17.

Currently, Turkish Airlines is the biggest airline which flies to the most countries in the world. The flag carrier flies to 219 destinations of which 183 are international.

The Turkish Airlines launches its direct flight between the Gabonese capital Libreville and Istanbul on Friday.

The airlines said in a statement that with Libreville, the Turkish carrier will hit the 200th destination across the world.

The carrier is a member of Star Alliance together with other major airlines such as Lufthansa and Egyptair.

The inaugural phase will last until March 2013, during which the company will schedule three rotational flights from Libreville every Monday, Wednesday and Friday at 3:10 a.m. local time. Departure from Istanbul is set at 5:45 p.m. every Sunday, Tuesday and Thursday. The flights will arrive in the Gabonese capital at 2: 10 a.m. after a stop-over in Douala.

The statement said Gabonese nationals who already have a Schengen, British or U.S. visa will be allowed to travel to Turkey without any precondition and will be granted a visa after arriving at the Istanbul airport.

The direct flights between Libreville and Istanbul was confirmed by Turkish Prime Minister Recep Tayyip Erdogan during his visit to Gabon in January 2013.

The diplomatic relations between Gabon and Turkey date back to 1998. The relationship was reinforced on Sept. 21, 2000 by the signing of a commercial, economic, cultural and technical agreement.

Since that date, the two countries have accelerated their exchanges, with an exchange of visits by the Turkish and Gabonese presidents Abdullah Gul and Ali Bongo.

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