Saudi Arabia's first low-cost airline, flynas has announced Delhi as its new destination starting July 1, 2019. Five departures a week are scheduled to Delhi's Indra Gandhi International Airport (DEL) from its operating base at Riyadh's King Khaled International Airport (RUH).
This announcement by flynas comes after Saudi Arabia agreed with India earlier in March 2019 to increase the number of flights by 40%, paving new opportunities for airlines operating from both countries.
Riyadh is the largest city in the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia with a population of around 7 million people. The Indian expatriate community is the largest minority in the city, with close to 1 million individuals. A large group from this Indian community come from Delhi, Rajasthan, Uttar Pradesh and Bihar, making Delhi's International Airport even more important in the region.
flynas re-entered the Indian market in 2018 with a successful launch of flights to Hyderabad's Rajiv Gandhi International Airport (HYD). Previously, operating as Nas Air, it has since cancelled flights to Kochi, Kozhikode and Mumbai (BOM).
|XY 329||Riyadh to Delhi||8:00 PM||3:15 AM||Mon, Tue, Thu, Sat, Sun|
|XY 330||Delhi to Riyadh||4:05 AM||6:00 AM||Mon, Tue, Wed, Fri, Sun|
flynas operates its international flights from Terminal 2 in Riyadh (RUH) and departs from terminal 3 in New Delhi (DEL)
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Riyadh: The capital of the Saudi Kingdom
Riyadh is the capital and the largest city of Saudi Arabia. With a population of over 7 million people, it is the third largest city in the Arab World and the fifth largest city in the Middle East (after Cairo, Tehran, Istanbul and Baghdad).
Riyadh is primarily a business and diplomatic destination. It is the political and administrative center of Saudi Arabia with the headquarters of most government bodies located here. Riyadh is also headquarters for a large number of banks such as Al Rajhi Bank, Riyadh Bank, and Arab National Bank and major companies like SABIC, Ma'aden, Amarai and Nadec. In addition, every publicly quoted company on Tadawul (Saudi Stock Exchange) is compelled by law to have an office in the city.
Amongst the residents of Saudi Arabia, Riyadh is known for its extreme temperatures due to its desert location, far from major water bodies. The lack of humidity causes temperatures in the summer regularly reach above 40°C in the day and below 10°C in the winter nights.
Riyadh keeps alive the traditions and preserves the culture of Saudi Arabia through its festivals, museums and attractions. National Museum of Saudi Arabia (Al Mathaf Al Watani) showcases the Saudi and Islamic Heritage through documentaries, antiques, manuscripts, art and geological discoveries in a space of 28,000 square meters.
The Masmak Fort recounts the story of King Abdul Aziz and his men storming the fort and re-taking Riyadh from the Ar-Rasheed dynasty. King Abdul Aziz then built the Murabba Palace for himself. It is a grand and imposing structure, which the King believed would be harder to conquer.
The Jenadriya Festival is a two-week long event that takes place in the cooler months of December and January. It showcases the local heritage of all Arabian Peninsula regions as well as the Saudi Arabian heritage through sports and art like the grand camel race, local music and sword-dancing and food.
Riyadh is served by King Khalid International Airport (RUH). It is beautiful and lavishly decorated, showcasing the Kingdom's desert roots and wealth to its visitors. It is served by more than 35 airlines, connecting to more than 80 domestic and international routes.
The land area allocated to King Khalid International Airport is the second largest in the world. It also has one of the world's tallest control towers, standing at 81 meters (266 ft). There are three operational terminals for passengers namely Terminals 1, 2 and 5. They are connected to each other by walkways. Terminal 5 is linked with Riyadh Metro's Yellow Line.
Riyadh has a place to stay for every kind of visitor on every kind of budget. Most International Hotel chains have a presence in the city. The Four Season's Hotel is located in Riyadh's tallest building, the Kingdom Centre. The Faisaliyah Hotel is a Rosewood Brand hotel located in Al Faisaliyah Centre, Riyadh's third tallest building and a well-known landmark.
Many renters in Riyadh will sub-let a spare room for visitors. Men travelling without female companions can eat and stay for very cheap in rooms shared by expatriate bachelors - provided you personally know at least one of them.
Budget hotels in Riyadh are plenty in Al-Bat'ha Municipality in the centre of the city. Riyadh is a large city with a radius of approximately 22km. Therefore where you choose to stay will depend on where you will spend most of your time outside the hotel.
Delhi: The capital of Sultans and Maharajas
The National Capital Territory of Delhi is India's second largest metropolis after Mumbai. It is located within the much larger, National Capital Region and surrounded by several districts of the states of Haryana, Uttar Pradesh and Rajasthan. India's capital and the seat of its Central Government in New Delhi is one of eleven districts of Delhi.
Delhi is one of the oldest cities in the world. Archeological evidence of habitation has been found dating back 7th century BC. Delhi has been the capital of several empires since the 12th century when Mu'izz ad-Din Muhammad Ghori captured the city and laid the foundations for the Delhi Sultanate.
Delhi reached its zenith during the reign of the Mughal Emperor, Shahjahan. He built Shahjahanabad between 1638 and 1649 AD and filled with mansions of nobles and members of the royal court, along with elegant mosques and gardens. The Jama Masjid, the Lal Qila and Chandni Chowk, all iconic sites of Old Delhi, exist from that period.
Mughal Cuisine originated in Delhi in the courts of the Sultans and the Shahanshahs. Heavily inspired by the flavours of Central Asia and Persia, Mughal cuisine distinguishes itself with a rich base of cream, milk butter and extensive use of spices like saffron, cardamom, black pepper, dry fruits and nuts.
Some of Delhi's restaurants are known worldwide such as Karim's, Moti Mahal Deluxe and Bukhara which serve classic north Indian dishes such as Nihari, Samosa, Tandoori Chicken, Qeema Matar, Shahi Paneer and varieties of Kebabs.
Delhi is India's largest commercial centre. Information technology, telecommunications, hotels, banking, media and tourism are its most important sectors. Since historic times, Delhi has been a favourite destination for shoppers. Some of its markets have been in existence since the 1500s AD.
Chandni Chowk is Asia's largest wholesale market. Within it are several bazaars each dedicated to a specific category of products. Khari Baoli is Asia's largest wholesale spice market selling all kinds of spices, nuts, herbs and food products like rice and tea. Dariba is the market for silver and gold jewelry. Nai Sarak is the wholesale market of stationery, books, paper and decorative materials.
Delhi served by Indra Gandhi International Airport (DEL), located on the south-western side of the city. It is the busiest airport in India (overtaking Mumbai in 2015). It is currently being expanded to handle up to 100 million passengers a year by 2030. Passenger numbers on Domestic routes far surpass those on International destinations combined.
Mumbai (BOM) is the busiest route from Delhi, with over 7 million passengers yearly. This is more than the number of passengers travelling to the next most popular destinations, Bengaluru (BLR), Kolkata (CCU) and Hyderabad (HYD).
Indra Gandhi International Airport (DEL) is connected to the Orange Line of the Delhi Metro, which takes you straight to the heart of the city at New Delhi Railway Station. It is located adjacent to National Highway 48, which connects Delhi to Gurugram, Jaipur, Mumbai, Pune and Bengaluru.
Delhi has hundreds of hotels and lodges available for the budget traveller. However, if the quality is imperative, then you will have to look a little farther than the centre of the city. Delhi's top hotels such as the Taj Mahal, Le Meridian, The Oberoi and the Imperial are located in New Delhi, catering to politicians, diplomats and businessmen. The south side of the city, near the airport, also has International chains such as Holiday Inn, Radisson, Marriot, Novotel and Pullman.
For the tourist and the backpacker, a number of hotels are located just west of Old Delhi in Paharganj and Karol Bagh. These locations are easy to access by the metro and close to Delhi's most popular sites and markets.
About flynas airlines
Founded in 2007 as Nas Air and rebranded in 2013, flynas is Saudi Arabia's first low-cost airline. It operates from its hub in Riyadh (RUH) with additional operating bases at Jeddah (JED) and Dammam (DMM).
flynas operates around 950 weekly flights using a fleet of Airbus A320, to 26 destinations within and outside of Saudi Arabia. Its most popular destinations are to Cairo (CAI), Istanbul (IST), Dubai, (DXB), Beirut (BEY), Lahore (LHE), Karachi (KHI) and Islamabad (ISB).
For frequent flyers to select destinations, flynas offers Nas Plans, a unique concept of purchasing pre-paid round trips with an incentive to collect SMILE points up to 2.5 times in value. Nas Plans are available for 3 round trips or 6 round trips, with a validity of 3 months. Currently, Nas Plans are only available for the Economy class.
Sources: flynas News