After a 20-year interval, Lufthansa is resuming flights to Iraq. On 25 April 2010, Germany’s largest carrier will launch services from Frankfurt to the city of Erbil in Northern Iraq. Lufthansa customers will have a choice of four flights per week on this new route. Lufthansa will operate the four-and-a-half hour flight with an Airbus A319 with 132 seats in Business and Economy Class.
With the resumption of flights to Iraq, Lufthansa is continuing to expand its route network in the Middle East and will then offer 100 flights per week to 15 destinations in twelve countries. Erbil has been served since 2006 from Vienna by Austrian Airlines, which flies under the Lufthansa Group banner. This flight is operated on a codeshare basis with Lufthansa. Including the new Lufthansa service, Lufthansa customers will thus have a choice of nine flights per week to Erbil.
The demand for flights to Iraq is growing amid signs of an economic recovery and as foreign firms set up operations in the country. With a population of one million, Erbil (also written Arbil), is the fourth-largest city in Iraq and has a rich history spanning several thousands of years. The economy in this region is growing vigorously. Numerous diplomatic and commercial representations, organisations and foreign companies have been set up in Northern Iraq. Erbil International Airport has recently been expanded and has a modern passenger terminal.