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SAUDIA Group allocated 1.2 million seats for 2023 Hajj season

SAUDIA Group has revealed its operational performance during the peak of the summer travel season from May 21-August 2, 2023, which included this year’s Hajj season.

During this period, it allocated more than 1.2 million seats for Hajj pilgrims, operating 79,000 flights.

Its fleet flew an average of half a million hours, while recording an on-time-performance rate of 83.8 per cent.

Meanwhile, 1,768 pilots and assistant pilots were rostered to manage the flights, while the guest cabin crew worked at full capacity during the season, with a total of 6,063 crew members working during the summer months.

SAUDIA Group’s support operations

The Hajj season also saw the mobilisation of the Saudia Aerospace Engineering Industries (SAEI) which “operated at full capacity”.

SAEI had a specialised team in place to support the operations during the Hajj season which included the allocation of 112 maintenance stations which were operated by 1,154 technicians.

In addition, SAEI supplied SAUDIA with 3,896 different types of aircraft parts while the time spent on maintenance amounted to 50,700 hours.

The Saudi Airlines Catering Company (SACC) also played a significant role during the Hajj season, providing services during the Hajj and Umrah seasons. SACC delivered 5.4 million meals provided on planes, 83,400 meals on the Haramain High Speed Railway, and 357,000 meals as part of its catering services in the holy sites.

The Saudi Ground Services Company (SGS) meanwhile provided handling services for more than 25,000 flights at the arrival and departure stages, which carried more than 2.18 million pilgrims, with a reported standard operational discipline rate of 99 per cent.

The services of Saudia Private Aviation (SPA) were available in four domestic airports, including King Abdulaziz International airport in Jeddah, King Khalid International Airport in Riyadh, King Fahd International Airport in Dammam, and Prince Mohammed Bin Abdulaziz International Airport in Madinah.

During the Hajj season, SPA operated 192 flights which carried more than 4,300 pilgrims. Guests using SPA’s services could avail of private travel lounges and post-flight services including reception and support.

Amer Alkhushail, chief Hajj and Umrah Officer at SAUDIA Group, said, “The end of the Hajj season marks the beginning of our preparation for the next one, as all stages will be reviewed and evaluated in order to further improve the level of services and enhance our performance.”

In July, SAUDIA airline announced the addition of new Airbus A321 neo aircraft to its fleet. The carrier aims to add 20 more A321 neo aircraft to its fleet by 2026.