National flag carrier Turkish Airlines (THY) will start new flights from the new Istanbul Airport, the company's chief executive officer said on Friday.
The carrier will fly to nine domestic - Diyarbakır, Kayseri, Hatay - and foreign - Moscow, Frankfurt, Munich, Paris, Ashgabat, Tbilisi - destinations, Bilal Ekşi said in a Twitter post.
He noted the carrier currently flies to Ankara, Antalya, İzmir, Trabzon, Adana, Gaziantep, Baku and Ercan from Istanbul Airport.
Once completed, Istanbul Airport will be the world's biggest international airport, covering 76.5 million square meters. The first phase of the airport opened on Oct. 29 on the 95th anniversary of the founding of the Republic of Turkey.
The grand opening ceremony was attended by President Recep Tayyip Erdoğan, Turkish ministers, officials and heads of state from around the world.
Commercial flights at the new airport started in early November. The airport has the potential to welcome 90 million passengers annually, and following the second phase of construction, expected to be completed in 2023, this number will reach up to 200 million. The airport will operate flights to 350 destinations worldwide.
With a fleet of 332 aircraft (passenger and cargo), THY flies to 306 destinations in 124 countries across the world, holding the title of the airline that flies to the most number of countries in the world.
Turkish Airlines carried nearly 70 million passengers over the first 11 months of this year. The total number of passengers the company flew was up 10 percent year-on-year to 69.7 million in the January-November period.
Last year, the airline carried 68.6 million passengers with a 79.1 percent seat occupancy rate.
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