Introduction

Etihad Airways announced on 19 December 2011 its purchase of a 29 per cent stake in airberlin, Germany’s second largest airline. The deal brings to 239 the total number of destinations we serve, either directly or with partner airlines.

If you’re flying into Europe, you’ll be able to seamlessly connect to 45 cities. One network. One ticket. And that’s great news for you!

airberlin partnership

The strategic move was announced in Berlin by Etihad Airways Chief Executive Officer James Hogan and then airberlin CEO Hartmut Mehdorn.

To read more about our partnership with airberlin, please click on the link below.

Introduction
Connectivity

Etihad Airways will place its EY code on these flights, providing European travellers with immediate access to a total of 29 flights a week to and through Abu Dhabi from four German hubs (Berlin, Düsseldorf, Frankfurt, Munich), with a plan to increase to 42 flights from mid-April.

To know more on how to take full advantage of or codeshare flights with airberlin, please see our connectivity page below.

View airberlin's codeshare routes

Visit airberlin.com

Connectivity

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Lounge facilities

The strategic partnership allows for reciprocal lounge access for premium passengers and top-tier frequent flyers of Etihad Airways and airberlin.

Etihad's lounges
Our top-tier guests are free to use our luxurious Diamond First Class lounge and Pearl Business Class lounge at Abu Dhabi Airport in addition to having access to premium lounges at airports around the world - including Sydney, Melbourne and Brisbane.

airberlin's lounges
Passengers of airberlin Business Class have access to exclusive VIP Lounges at 23 German and international airports. Depending on airport procedure either the boarding pass or a separate invitation entitles them for entry. On the airberlin website you can see an overview of these lounges and their services.

Loyalty programmes

Etihad Airways' strategic partnership with airberlin integrates our Etihad Guest loyalty programme with airberlin’s frequent flyer programme, topbonus. This brings you a host of benefits that are detailed more extensively on this Etihad Guest web page.

Etihad Guest and airberlin topbonus frequent flyer program members can earn award and status miles on each other’s airlines.

Etihad Guest Silver, Gold and Gold Elite members can enjoy additional status benefits such as use of airberlin’s priority check-in, priority boarding and increased baggage allowances on all routes.

Etihad Guest Silver, Gold and Gold Elite members can also access exclusive airberlin waiting areas at Berlin, Cologne and Dusseldorf airports. Similar reciprocal benefits are available to airberlin topbonus members travelling with Etihad Airways.

Benefits for Etihad Guest Gold Elite,  Gold and Silver Members on all airberlin and NIKI operated flights regardless of class of travel.

 Benefits

 Etihad Guest Silver, Gold and Gold Elite

 Priority Check-in

Yes

 Priority Boarding

Yes

 Baggage Allowance

Flights until 30.04.2012:
 Economy: 30kg
 Business: 40kg
 USA/Canada: 2 piece at 32kg

 Flights as of 01.05.2012:
 Economy: 2 piece at 23kg
 Business: 2 piece at 32kg

 Exclusive waiting area access

Yes


Members can only access the Exclusive Waiting Areas by swiping their Etihad Guest Card. The benefits shall be granted to eligible Etihad Guest Members and are governed by the topbonus programme rules granted to the topbonus eligible members.

Air Berlin Business Class

New full flat seats provide superior comfort and increased privacy

In December 2012, the first Airbus A330 equipped with the new airberlin Business Class took off from Dusseldorf destined for Abu Dhabi. The new configuration with 19 seats offers guests even more privacy and provides direct access to the aisle from every seat.

The majority of the seats also offer completely individual seating. These seats can be fully reclined into comfortable beds to guarantee a relaxing flight. In addition, the new seats have a massage function.

Entertainment on board is provided by the Inflight Entertainment System via an individual 15-inch monitor at each seat. This gives guests a choice of more than 200 hours of entertainment including current box office hits, TV series, music and games, as well as providing a USB port.

Airberlin Business Class guests receive an Amenity Kit containing high-quality personal care products and useful travel accessories, which has already won the TravelPlus "Gold Award".

Guests have a choice of several dishes from the renowned Sansibar Restaurant, complemented by accompanying Sansibar wines. The culinary offer is rounded off with snacks, fresh fruit and a wide choice of soft drinks and alcoholic beverages.

airberlin is gradually equipping its long-haul fleet with these new Business Class seats, which are produced by Sogerma. With its new Business Class, Germany’s second largest airline guarantees a seamless travel experience us.

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Monday, January 16, 2012 saw the inaugural Airbus A330-200 airberlin flight land at Abu Dhabi International Airport, where it was welcomed by Etihad Airways President and CEO, James Hogan.

Gourmet dining and special requests

airberlin's Sansibar gourmet menus

Food and drink
On airberlin flights you will be served coffee, tea, soft drinks or fruit juices free of charge. There is also a selection of alcoholic drinks which can be purchased.

Catering service on short-haul and medium-haul flights
You will be served free snacks or sandwiches on board airberli's short-haul and medium-haul flights with a flight time of up to 4 hours; on flights with a flight time of more than 4 hours you will be served a range of complimentary bagels and baguettes, nibbles and chocolate bars.

Sansibar gourmet menus 
On all airberlin routes with a flight time of 60 minutes or longer you can also opt for freshly prepared gourmet meals designed by Sansibar. Depending on the time of day or season of the year, you can enjoy a range of specialities created by Herbert Seckler, who runs the famous Sansibar restaurant on the German island of Sylt. You can view the full menu online and pre-order your gourmet meal.

Please note that airberlin needs to receive your order no more than 30 days and at least 48 hrs before the flight. During this period you can also pre-order your gourmet meal when you book your flight online.

airberlin's Business Class

Catering service on long-haul flights
On airberlin's long-haul flights to Asia, North America, South Africa and the Caribbean you will be served two meals in Economy Class: one main meal with a choice of two hot dishes, and a cold meal or snack. You also have the option of pre-ordering free special menus. airberlin also serves special children’s menus for children from the age of two.

Special menus and children’s menus
On airberlin's long-haul flights you can request the following special meals, free of charge:
Vegetarian meals
Gluten-free meals
Lactose-free meals
Vegan meals
Meals for diabetics
Kosher meals 
Halal meal

Food and drink in airberlin’s Business Class
Our Business Class passengers are served a multi-course menu in elegant surroundings. There is a choice of several main courses. If you are a little peckish, we will serve you snacks, fruit and sandwiches. You will be welcomed on board with a drink and our wide selection of beverages, including select red and white wines, will be available to you during the flight.

In-flight entertainment

airberlin offers you a wide variety of in-flight entertainment on all flights. In addition to a radio programme featuring current hits, classical music and jazz, you can enjoy onboard TV with serials, cartoons and music videos. A film is shown on all routes with a flight time of over four hours.

In addition airberlin has a wide selection of complimentary local and national daily newspapers as well as journals and high-quality magazines on various topics available for you. On German domestic flights you can select your reading material even before you board the aircraft.
On long-haul flights the onboard TV will keep you wonderfully entertained with the best movies, music videos and short film reports. You also have a choice of up to 12 music channels ranging from classical music to pop. In addition, airberlin keeps a large selection of current newspapers and magazines for you on board free of charge.

Frequently asked questions

What does this new partnership mean for me?

As an Etihad customer, you will see  many benefits from our partnership with airberlin. Since 15 January, we  introduced codesharing between our airlines, adding 36 additional codeshare destinations to the Etihad network and 24 additional codeshare destinations to airberlin’s network. This means tens of millions of customers of both of our airlines now have a wide range of new choices.

Etihad Guest members will also be able to ‘earn and burn’ on airberlin’s services. This means that when you travel on an airberlin flight, you will earn miles on your Etihad Guest account – and you will also have the option of redeeming miles against airberlin services.
 
Over the coming weeks we will also be seeking regulatory permission for greater coordination of services, of our route networks and of our marketing activities, extending the choices available to all our customers.

What are the immediate changes that might affect me?

For customers with pre-existing bookings, either through Etihad, airberlin or any of our codeshare partners, there is no immediate change. Flight bookings, frequent flyer benefits and lounge access all remain the same for the immediate future.

Why is Etihad Airways doing this?

It’s all about choice. With this partnership, we are increasing the choices available to our customers, adding 36 codeshare destinations to our network.

At Etihad, we have developed many partnerships over the last eight years and through our codeshare relationships, we already offer more destinations than any other Middle Eastern airline. With this airberlin partnership, that choice increases even more.

Will all airberlin and Etihad Airways routes be codeshared?

Our aim is to codeshare on as many routes as we are able, subject to regulatory approval. On some routes, the national regulations governing air travel mean that we are not able to code share.

What difference does a codeshare mean for me?

It means you will be able to select travel to a wider range of destinations, with one booking and one fare. For Etihad customers, this means a massive choice of new destinations in Germany, Switzerland and Austria, as well as through to the United States and the Caribbean.

What is happening with Etihad Guest and airberlin’s frequent flyer program?

Members of each frequent flyer program will be able to ‘earn and burn’ on the other airline’s services. So if you are an Etihad Guest member, when you travel on an airberlin flight, you will earn miles on your Etihad Guest account – and you will also have the option of redeeming miles against airberlin services.

I currently have a booking on airberlin’s Berlin–Dubai service in two months, but I understand it will now go to Abu Dhabi. How will I get to Dubai?

If you have a booking on this service, airberlin will be contacting you directly about your travel arrangements. But please do not worry – Dubai is only a short journey from Abu Dhabi, in one our regular luxury coach or limousine services.

Will I earn the same rate of miles?

The earning rate will be as per the operating carrier’s rules. For example, an Etihad Guest member flying on an airberlin flight will earn Etihad Guest miles at the same rate as a topbonus member would earn points on the same flight.

How is this partnership different from other codeshare relationships?

We are developing a long-term strategic partnership with airberlin, signified by our decision to invest in an equity stake in the airline.  We will become airberlin’s largest single shareholder and together we will develop a series of new customer service initiatives, new destinations and business efficiencies.

We are also really excited that airberlin began its Berlin-Abu Dhabi service on 15 January 2012.

When do the services go on sale?

Etihad passengers have been able to purchase tickets on airberlin services since 15 January 2012.

Is group travel affected on these services?

Customers and travel agents will be able to make group bookings with either airline via specialised group bookings teams.