Greg Lindsay's Blog

January 12, 2010  |  permalink

Business Class Over Baghdad

This is a good sign: Lufthansa is re-starting flights to Iraq.

East Meadow, NY, Jan. 12, 2010 - As Iraq’s civil aviation continues to open up, demand for flights to the country is growing. Lufthansa is therefore examining the possibility of launching several new services to Iraq and is currently planning to serve the capital, Baghdad, and the city of Erbil in Northern Iraq from its hubs in Frankfurt and Munich.

Lufthansa aims to launch the new services in the summer of 2010, once it has obtained the necessary traffic rights. Further infrastructure requirements are also being examined. With the resumption of flights to Iraq, Lufthansa is pursuing its policy of expanding its route network in the Middle East, which it presently serves with 88 flights per week to 14 destinations in eleven countries.

Lufthansa operated flights to Baghdad from 1956 until the start of the Gulf War in 1990. Erbil is already being served from Vienna by Austrian Airlines, which is part of the Lufthansa Group. From next summer, Baghdad and Erbil will be linked to Lufthansa’s hubs in Frankfurt and Munich and will thus be integrated into Lufthansa’s global route network.

Previously, to get to Baghdad on civilian flights, you’d have to leave from Dubai’s Terminal 2 on one of several shady Mideast carriers, along with bounty hunters, mercenaries, and other interesting types, a fact which prompted British Esquire to describe DXB as “the world’s most dangerous airport.”

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Greg Lindsay is a journalist, urbanist, futurist, and speaker. He is the director of applied research at NewCities and director of strategy at its mobility offshoot CoMotion.  He is also a partner at FutureMap, a geo-strategic advisory firm based in Singapore, a non-resident senior fellow of The Atlantic Council’s Foresight, Strategy, and Risks Initiative, and co-author of Aerotropolis: The Way We’ll Live Next.

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