Saudi sees the launch of first privately operated airline service

Al Khayala takes to the skies this month as it launches scheduled services across the Kingdom for VIP and corporate clients.

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By  Laura Barnes Published  July 14, 2005

Saudi Arabia will see the first privately operated scheduled airline service start this month, after National Air Services (NAS) was granted a commercial aviation licence by the Presidency of Civil Aviation in Saudi Arabia. Al Khayala, the private airline, will operate four scheduled flights per day between Riyadh and Jeddah from Saturday to Wednesday, along with charter flights on weekdays, weekends and official holidays to regional destinations. Khalil Kordi, the chairman of NAS said in a press conference that his company: “Plays a crucial role in offering a wide range of innovative aviation services that are tailor-made to suit the needs and requirements of its clientele across the region.” “The board takes pride in NAS’ achievements, especially over the past few years when we have outperformed our business plan. We consider ourselves one of the building blocks in the development of aviation services in the Kingdom,” he added. Al Khayala has been developed as a unit within NAS to serve VIPs and businessmen who frequently fly between Riyadh and Jeddah. The route will be served with an Airbus A319 aircraft with a 44 seat capacity, compared to the usual 170 seat configuration of the aircraft. The service will be catered towards individuals, corporate and government clients, who require either annual daily blocked or ad hoc seats. The service will also extend to on-ground services where Al Khayala passengers will be able to use private aviation lounges in Al Khayala stations both within the Kingdom and abroad.

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