Abu Dhabi, United Arab Emirates – Etihad Airways, the national airline of the UAE and official partner of the Formula 1 Etihad Airways Abu Dhabi Grand Prix, has operated ten flights to transport the protected Formula 1 ‘biosphere’ from Manama, Bahrain to Abu Dhabi, UAE. The Formula 1 management, teams, drivers and crew travelled to Abu Dhabi International Airport on 7 December and were transferred to Yas Marina Circuit ahead of this season’s F1 finale.
The airline operated a fleet of Boeing 787 Dreamliner, Airbus A320 and A321 for the mission, with current team champions Mercedes flying on Etihad’s unique Boeing 787 Dreamliner featuring a Formula 1 themed livery. The special livery was launched in 2018 and raises the profile of Abu Dhabi’s acclaimed Formula 1 across the Etihad network. In addition, Etihad Cargo operated five cargo flights transporting Formula 1 kit to the UAE capital.
Terry Daly, Executive Director Guest Experience, Brand and Marketing, Etihad Aviation Group, said: “Working with our partners at Yas Marina Circuit, bringing the Formula 1 to Abu Dhabi is always an incredibly exciting experience. This year, it is an opportunity for Etihad to showcase its ‘Wellness’ credentials which are leading the way in the aviation industry’s response to COVID-19.
“The Formula 1 protected ‘biosphere’ ensures that safety and wellness is guaranteed, and Etihad’s role in this operation was meticulously planned. Etihad transported more than 1200 guests in order to move the Formula 1 from our neighbour Bahrain to Yas Marina Circuit in Abu Dhabi. Guests on board were looked after by our Wellness Ambassadors who are available on every Etihad flight to ensure the highest safety and wellbeing standards.”
While onboard, the drivers were treated to personalised good luck video messages from Formula 1 fans including many of the airline’s staff and crew. A Formula 1 themed menu was served, and drivers were given personalised snoods, Etihad’s unique microbebarrier™ face protection.
As a result of the airline’s Etihad Wellness initiative, all passengers travelling with Etihad receive complimentary COVID-19 wellness insurance. Etihad is one of the only airlines in the world requiring 100% of its passengers to show a negative PCR test before travelling, ensuring peace of mind for all on board.
The Formula 1 Etihad Airways Abu Dhabi Grand Prix will take place on Sunday 13 December with practice sessions beginning on 11 December on the iconic F1 track at Yas Marina Circuit.