Karachi : PIA Pre-Hajj Operation will commence from 9th September 2013. The entire Hajj operation will be conducted by PIA s own fleet without leasing any aircraft.
Managing Director PIA, Muhammad Junaid Yunus said that the airline s Pre Hajj operation will commence from 9th September and conclude on[highlight] 9th October 2013 [/highlight]while the Post Hajj operation will start from 19th October and conclude on 18th November 2013.
He said that the entire Hajj operation will be conducted by PIA s own fleet without leasing any aircraft. This will be huge saving for the National Flag Carrier.
PIA will operate Hajj flights with dedicated [highlight]02 Boeing 747[/highlight],[highlight] 02 Boeing 777 [/highlight]aircraft with one aircraft each kept as standby.
Boeing 777 aircraft will mainly be operated from Karachi, Peshawar and Quetta whereas Lahore, Islamabad, Multan and Sialkot will entirely be operated by Boeing 747 aircraft.
Boeing [highlight]747 [/highlight]aircraft has a seating capacity of 503 while Boeing[highlight] 777[/highlight] has a seating capacity of [highlight]329[/highlight].
MD PIA said that PIA will operate Hajj flights from Karachi, Lahore, Islamabad, Peshawar, Quetta, Multan and Sialkot.
In all, PIA will transport more than [highlight]70,000[/highlight] intending pilgrims to Saudi Arabia through [highlight]160 Pre- Hajj [/highlight]flights. PIA will operate same number of flights for Post Hajj operation.
This year due ongoing construction of extending facilities at Khaana Kaaba the Saudi Government has reduced hajj quota by 20 percent.
On Pre-Hajj flights, the airline will transport 6,985 intending pilgrims from Karachi through 17 Pre Hajj flights (including more than 1,623 intending pilgrims from Sukkur via Karachi),[highlight] 6,944[/highlight] intending pilgrims from Lahore through 14 flights, 12,575 passengers through 25 flights from Islamabad,
[highlight]15,463[/highlight] through 47 flights from Peshawar, [highlight]10,199[/highlight] from Quetta through 31 flights, [highlight]6,170[/highlight] intending pilgrims through 12 flights from Multan.
3,590 intending pilgrims from Sialkot will be transported through 7 Pre-Hajj flights. 8,000 pilgrims will be transported through PIA regular scheduled flights to Saudi Arabia.
A special facilitation desk at Hajji camps for the convenience of pilgrims has been set up. The facilitation desk will provide guidance and support to intending pilgrims at Hajji camps.
This year intending pilgrims will reach airport directly which will save their time. PIA Passenger Handling Division officials and PIA scouts will be available at the airport for pilgrims assistance at the airports in Pakistan and Jeddah Hajj Terminal.
MD PIA said that Pilgrims are allowed to carry 5 litres of Zamzam (subject to conditions of Saudi government). Flyers printed at the back of ticket jacket containing the policies of Free Baggage Allowance, Excess Baggage, Change of Bookings & Re- issuance of Ticket etc have been made.
Towards the end of the briefing, MD PIA said that all departments including Marketing, Engineering, Passenger Handling Services, Flight operations are fully geared up to make this Hajj operation a great success and to ensure maximum facilitation to pilgrims at all airports in Pakistan as well as at Jeddah.
The briefing was attended by Deputy Managing Director, Humayun Jamil, Director Marketing PIA Khurram Mushtaq, Director Corporate Planning and Chief Hajj Coordinator PIA, Shahnawaz Rehman, General Manager Passenger Handling Services, Amir Bashir and senior officials of the airline.