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Etihad Airways now offers free hotel stays for stopovers in Abu Dhabi

Discover the beautiful architecture, diverse landscapes and unique culture of Abu Dhabi.

Passengers on flights operated by Etihad Airways with connections in Abu Dhabi can now add an extra destination to their itinerary at no additional cost. The United Arab Emirates’ national airline has partnered with the Department of Culture and Tourism in Abu Dhabi to launch the Abu Dhabi Stopover program.

Louvre Abu Dhabi
Louvre Abu Dhabi © Adobe Stock

Abu Dhabi Stopover

Abu Dhabi Stopover is a service exclusive to Etihad Airways’ guests and is designed to entice travellers to extend their stay into a holiday by providing free hotel stays. When booking flights directly with Etihad Airways, guests now have the option to add a stopover and select a complimentary hotel as part of the online booking process. Guests can choose a free stay for one or two nights in a range of premier hotels across the city. Abu Dhabi is a major connection point for travellers en route to Europe and the Americas from Australia, and the Abi Dhabi Stopover program aims to turn these transiting visitors into holidaying tourists. To sweeten the deal, Etihad Airways’ boarding pass also doubles up as the Abu Dhabi Pass, which offers discounts at many of the city’s leading attractions and dining experiences.

Emirates Palace Mandarin Oriental © Adobe Stock
Emirates Palace Mandarin Oriental © Adobe Stock

Things to do in Abu Dhabi

The UAE capital has diverse and beautiful landscapes, from the serene dunes offering desert safari adventures to the turtle-nesting beaches of Saadiyat Island. See breathtaking architectural marvels such as the iconic Sheikh Zayed Grand Mosque, the Louvre Abu Dhabi, and the Qasr Al Watan presidential palace. Families with toddlers or teens will find something to please every member of the family on Yas Island, where theme parks such as Ferrari World, Warner Bros. World, and Yas Waterworld are all found. Yas Island is also home to Yas Marina Circuit, host of the famous Formula 1 Etihad Airways Abu Dhabi Grand Prix, and the racetrack is open to visitors for walking, running, cycling and go-karting most of the year.

Read more: 12 awe-inspiring things to do in Abu Dhabi

red desert in Abu Dhabi
The Abu Dhabi desert © Adobe Stock

Dubai Connect

Emirates offers a similar service called Dubai Connect; however, it’s offered with a caveat: only on connecting flights with a wait between eight and 26 hours before your next flight and when an earlier connection isn’t available. Passengers whose connections meet the criteria receive complimentary hotel accommodation, transfers, applicable meals and a visa to enter the UAE. To enjoy the service, it must be booked online at least 24 hours before your incoming flight to Dubai. The service can be added to an existing booking through the ‘Manage’ website functionality.

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