Ethiopian Airlines adds flights to Bengaluru from Addis Ababa

Ethiopian Airlines operates twice-daily flights from Addis Ababa to Mumbai and Delhi each. While it operates an A350-900 to Mumbai on both frequencies, it operates a 767-300ER to Delhi on both flights. For many years, Ethiopian Airlines was rumoured to add flights to Chennai. A few years back, bilaterals between India and Ethiopia were increased and Bangalore was added as a point of call in place of Kolkata.

Ethiopian Airlines india

Ethiopian Airlines 737-800

Well, Ethiopian Airlines have now announced addition of 4x weekly flights to Bengaluru from Addis Ababa. The first flight is scheduled for October 27, 2019. Ethiopian Airlines will deploy a 737-800 on this route. The schedule for the new flight is,

ET690 ADD2300 – 0800(+1 day)BLR 738 x136
ET691 BLR0230 – 0635ADD 738 x135

The flight is currently bookable. Roundtrip economy class fares start at INR 68k and roundtrip business class fares are available for INR 134k. You can find some good deals on Ethiopian airlines if you are connecting to Nairobi, Cape Town, Mount Kilimanjaro, Dar es Salaam and so-on.

Ethiopian Airlines india

Bengaluru-Addis Ababa

Ethiopian Airlines’ 737-800 feature 16 recliner business class seats and 138 economy class seats. Interestingly, the 737-800 will have a turnaround time of 18 hours at Bengaluru. This is probably done so as to the time it with some flights to the USA as well as within Africa.

Ethiopian Airlines india

Ethiopian Airlines 737-800 Interiors

Or maybe Ethiopian airlines is planning to add a fifth freedom flight from Bengaluru? When RwandAir initially added flights to Mumbai from Kigali, the 737-800 had a similar turnaround time at Mumbai airport. But earlier last month, RwandAir upgraded the route to an A330-300 and added fifth freedom flights to Guangzhou from Mumbai to increase aircraft utilisation.

Will you book Ethiopian Airlines new flights to Bengaluru?


  1. Karan, regarding your point about fifth-freedom connections, does India allow sterile transit for international connecting passengers?

    • @Sandeep not sure about what the term is called, but back in the day 9W used to have a lot of transit passengers between Europe and Bangkok without the need to get a visa.

      • I didn’t know that 9W did that. What I was referring to was just that- being able to make international transfer without actually clearing immigration in the country where you’re transiting. (This is why the US can never attract international transfer traffic in a big way)

  2. Aditya you are bang on. There is a great opportunity to take traffic from BLR and nearby cities to Lagos, Accra, Abidjan etc and other destinations in East and South Africa. Emirates has been dominating these routes. Fares out of BLR are 30 -50% greater than out of Mumbai where Ethiopian, Kenyan, Turkish, South African etc are present and EK has to drop prices. ET has limited connections to US but Europe flights would be in play. Would have liked to see a 777 or a dreamliner instead of 737 though.

  3. Sorry to Karan, Aditya, and basically the entire LFAL readership, but in no way does Ethiopian care for India-US connections. The reason for the schedule has to do with making sure that connections from West Africa work–a further distance from ADD compared with East and Southern Africa. And even those don’t always do. (Some are tag-on/hopping flights, some parts of westernmost Africa are just too far, there are security/safety issues at some airports, etc.)

    Africa-US commands better fares due to numerous niche destinations that are underserved by European carriers. I mean, sure, they can sell a few tickets to India here and there, but with two outbound stops (ADD has too high an elevation for nonstops to USA or Canada) and a longer routing compared with other options, what is the point to the Indian traveller?

    Just to repeat what I wrote ~24 hours ago in the ANA-Chennai discussion, India-US is now very well served and fares are rather low esp when you divide by the distance travelled. The Gulf carriers and nonstop services have taken over. It is not worth the effort for other carriers to get into the picture unless it is accidental or incidental. It is not worth adjusting schedules simply to accommodate US connections.

    In fact we should expect UA serving EWR-BLR in the next few years. Goldman Sachs has one of its largest offices in Bangalore, focused on technology. EWR-BLR is more likely than SFO-BLR because the latter city pair’s greater distance. Plus there are more connections opportunities at EWR.

    Once upon a time airlines like LH would serve places like HYD despite lack of O&D traffic to Germany, because they were happy to fill their planes to the US, but those days are long gone. On the other hand, Ethiopian was never interested in US connections from India in the first place. Why would they, when India-Africa has so many opportunities? BTW, fares can be low, relative to distance, on India-Africa itineraries as well. If Ethiopian try to accommodate US connections this would dilute their performance even further!

  4. Timings are kept in view of connections within Africa and further to US.
    Most of the flights return to Addis base in evening hours from the continent while they leave Addis in the morning hours.
    Back in 2014 BOM connections to west Africa were horrible and I had missed my connecting flight at Addis.

    Recently flew again on ET and the experience inflight was good. New A350 all the way to Accra and back.

    Just the bad thing is The Addis Ababa Airport, similar to a bus stand.

  5. I wish they used a different/wide body aircraft, atleast the same as Mumbai or Delhi, But good that they are adding connectivity.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *