SriLankan Airlines, the national carrier of Sri Lanka and a member of the oneworld alliance, announced the commencement of direct flights between Sri Lanka and Russia yesterday.
The inaugural flight was ceremonially greeted with a water salute at Domodedovo Airport (DME) in Moscow. The airline is resuming flights to the Russian capital after a break of six years, between Colombo’s Bandaranaike International Airport (BIA) and Moscow’s Domodedovo Airport (DME). SriLankan will operate its flights to Russia every Friday using an Airbus A330 configured for 269 economy and 28 business class seats. The frequency of operation will be once a week, having a flight time of around 8 hours and 25 minutes. Flight UL533 will depart Colombo at 22:20 hrs., landing at Moscow Domodedovo Airport at 04:30 hrs., with the return leg UL534 leaving Moscow at 19:15 hrs. the next day and landing back into Colombo at 06:05 hrs. on Sunday. SriLankan Airlines Chairman Ashok Pathirage said: “Sri Lanka has a longstanding relationship with Russia which dates back to many centuries, as we have kept an undiminished friendship propagating trade, tourism, culture, and education. SriLankan Airlines resumes flights to Moscow providing a significant air link that opens to the gateway of the South Asian region. We hope that our flights between the two countries builds a window of opportunity for both countries in terms of trade and tourism.” Our frequent flyer program FlySmiLes provides travellers with a wide range of rewards to its members through a host of partners. Platinum and Gold Members are entitled to a range of privileges such as complimentary lounge access across the oneworld network, priority Business Class check-in and boarding and additional baggage allowances. FlySmiLes’ top tier members can earn and redeem miles on any oneworld member carriers. These privileges have been tailored to create a smooth and hassle-free journey filled with luxury. “We are delighted to return to Russia as we add Moscow to our growing route network. Passengers can now transfer or travel to Sri Lanka as restrictions in the country gradually ease for international business and leisure visitors. In time to come we look forward to increasing our cargo and passenger frequencies,” SriLankan Airlines CEO Vipula Gunatilleka said. SriLankan Airlines became the first carrier in the South Asian region to receive the ‘Diamond’ rating from the Airline Passengers Experience Association (APEX) and SimpliFlying, a standard received for the extra safety measures and comprehensive hygiene precautions adhered to since the onset of the global pandemic. SriLankan Airlines is an award-winning airline with a firm reputation as a global leader in service, comfort, safety, reliability, and punctuality. Head of Worldwide Sales and Distribution Dimuthu Tennakoon said: “Recommencing flights between Russia and Sri Lanka is important to us at a time when the global travel industry is seeing a gradual revival, we are extremely confident that these flights will indeed fulfil aspirations of the travellers who want to see the world and would boost travel between both countries.” Passengers intending to travel with SriLankan Airlines could book their tickets from the Airline’s ticket offices in Colombo, Galle, and Kandy or through their preferred travel agent. For more information kindly contact SriLankan Airlines Global Contact Centre on +94 11 777 1979 or visit www.srilankan.com.
Original Article : https://www.ft.lk/top-story/More-tourists-from-Russia-as-SriLankan-Airlines-returns-to-Moscow-with-direct-flights/26-721180