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New Saudi airline is to begin flights in November

Saudi Gulf Airlines plans to begin flying in November after receiving regulatory approvals.

Samer Majali, the group’s president and senior adviser, told Reuters that the the airline plans to fly from Dammam to three destinations, initially with a fleet of four Airbus A320s. Owned by the Abdel Hadi Al-Qahtani & Sons group, Saudi Gulf Airlines is currently working with the General Authority of Civil Aviation (GACA) in preparation for starting operations to obtain the technical licence.

Initial flights from Dammam will be to Jeddah, Riyadh and one international destination. As the fleet expands in 2016, further destinations will be added. In addition to the A320 aircraft, the airline signed a $2 billion deal with Canada’s Bombardier last year to purchase 16 CSeries jets with an option for a further 10.

The airline’s domestic flights will offer first class and economy fares, while international flights will provide business class and economy class services.

The regulator’s spokesman Wael Al Sarhan told Reuters that Saudi Gulf presented its readiness plans for Nov. 1 during a meeting with GACA officials on Sunday. He said,  “They have a primary licence and the final licence will be given when they complete final readiness for operations,”.

The final Air Operator’s Certificate is an approval for an airline to use its aircraft for commercial operations and the state of readiness includes the personnel, aircraft and systems able to carry out operations.