Etihad Airways marked the arrival of its new Boeing 787-9 Dreamliner, unveiling a special livery design celebrating its partnership with Manchester City Football Club.
The aircraft was delivered to Etihad in Abu Dhabi on 18 October, ahead of its inaugural flight to Manchester Airport.
On arrival, the flight and its passengers were met by Omar Berrada, COO for Manchester City, club legend Joleon Lescott, Karen Bardsley and mascots for a welcome ceremony.
Robin Kamark, CCO, Etihad Aviation Group, said: “As we celebrate a decade of this successful partnership, we are proud to see the Manchester City colours grace our runways and skies, as the new Boeing 787-9 Dreamliner takes flight.
“Manchester is a very important destination in the Etihad network serving both business and leisure travellers. We are proud to showcase the city, and our partnership with the club through this uniquely branded aircraft. It is only fitting that its first commercial flight is to Manchester.”
Omar Berrada, COO at Manchester City, said: “Manchester City’s partnership with Etihad Airways continues to go from strength to strength and this new livery is yet another example of how Etihad are celebrating the achievements of the Club with fans around the world. This is an exciting milestone in our partnership, and we can’t wait to see the City crest and colours take to the skies.”
In the coming months, the specially painted City Boeing 787-9 Dreamliner will also be scheduled to fly in and out of destinations including Manchester, Jordan, Spain, Indonesia and China.
The new Manchester City-themed livery is the first since 2011, when Etihad Airways unveiled the ‘Blue Moon Rising’ A330-200 in celebration of its second daily service to Manchester.
Both City and Manchester Airport have launched a joint social media competition encouraging fans to post photos of the aircraft on their Instagram or Facebook pages.