Before They Fly

Abu Dhabi International Airport is one of the fastest-growing airport hubs in the world. Etihad flights depart from Terminal 1 & 3. This is where you’ll find our First Lounge & Spa, and Business ounge. All Etihad Airways guests need to complete their check-in in Terminal 3 only. 


It is important that guests report for check-in, immigration and boarding on time.


Guests can check in online or at the airport from four hours before each flight departs.


Our closing times before departure are strict. Please share these with all guests:


  • Economy check-in: 60 minutes
  • Business check-in: 45 minutes
  • US flights check-in: two hours
  • US Preclearance facility: 60 minutes

With a range of options to enhance their journey, your guests can choose the experience they prefer at a price they can afford.


Seating Options

In Economy, your customer can pay for their choice of:


  • Economy Standard seat (or we will allocate a seat for free within 24 hours of departure)
  • Economy Space seat, with extra legroom to stretch out
  • Economy Neighbor-Free, for more space and privacy (subject to availability)


Excess Baggage

Encourage your customers to pre-book their extra baggage online, and save up to 20% on airport fees. To purchase excess baggage, click here.



Or customers can upgrade to Business or First, and enjoy great food, fully-flat beds or simply more privacy.



All customers can now access our lounges for a small fee, or organize our personalized Etihad Meet & Greet service to make their journey through the airport even more relaxing.


Here are GDS specific ancillary guides:

Note: Due to government restrictions across our network, guests will only be permitted to carry a personal item on board, such as a handbag, backpack or laptop bag. This can weigh up to 5kg. Remaining cabin baggage can be checked in for free. This applies to tickets in Economy, Business and First. We advise all guests to read our regulations before they travel.


Guests can pack as much or as little as they need with generous baggage allowances and the option to pay for excess or oversized baggage.


Checked baggage


Your guests’ checked baggage allowance will depend on the fare type, the cabin they’re flying in and the flight route.


As a general policy, our baggage allowance to all destinations starts from:


·         Economy Deal fares: 23kg

·         Economy Saver and Classic fares: 30kg

·         Economy Flex fares: 35kg

·         All Business fares: 40kg

·         All First fares: 50kg


Your guests’ baggage allowance can be split over multiple items, though the maximum weight of any one item must not exceed 32kg.


Checked baggage must be within the following dimensions:


·         To or from the US and Canada: 50cm x 70cm x 38cm

·         To or from all other destinations: 45cm x 72cm x 90cm


Find out exactly how much baggage your guest is entitled to here.


Cabin baggage / hand baggage


Economy guests:


On board, guests in Economy can carry one cabin bag and one personal item, such as a laptop, handbag or Duty Free purchase.


·         Cabin bags should be no more than 50cm x 40cm x 25cm and weigh up to 7kg

·         Personal items should be no more than 40cm x 30cm x 15cm and weigh up to 5kg


Business and First guests:


Guests in Business or First can carry two cabin bags and one personal item, such as a laptop, handbag or Duty Free purchase.


·         Cabin bags should be no more than 50cm x 40cm x 25cm and have a combined weight of up to 12kg

·         Personal items should be no more than 40cm x 30cm x 15cm and weigh up to 5kg


Cabin baggage that exceeds the maximum weight or dimensions may be checked into the hold. Additional charges may apply.


Excess and oversized baggage


Guests travelling with golf clubs, bikes, scuba diving equipment, skis, ski poles or ski boots can do so for free as part of their checked baggage allowance. These items must not exceed 300cm in length.


All other items are subject to an excess or oversized baggage fee


Golf clubs


Guests travelling with golf clubs? In addition to our generous baggage allowance, guests can carry one set of golf clubs for free, weighing up to 15kg. One set may consist of clubs, balls and one pair of golf shoes.


If guests are carrying a golf umbrella separately, this will count as an additional item and fees may apply.


Applicable to all Etihad-operated flights.


With immediate effect, bookings for seamen will no longer be required to be updated with an OK to Board (OTB) message.  


OTB messages were discontinued in 2017 when UAE visa validation was activated on our Sabre check-in system.


Economy guests can use our Etihad Coach to travel between Dubai and Al Ain, when flying into or out of Abu Dhabi International Airport.


The city code for Al Ain Etihad Airways Coach has been changed from AAN to ZVH. This has been published on all GDS systems and will apply to coaches departing from 15 November onwards. The pickup/drop off location point remains unchanged.


The code AAN will be used solely for Al Ain International Airport. 


This is a free service, but they must pre-book their seat. Book now.


For schedule details, please refer to:


Al Ain


We offer tailor-made fares, so every guest can make their choice of journey according to their needs. Whether they want to travel light, in luxury or even last-minute, our fares and benefits are flexible.


For details, please refer to the table.


Hand baggage only fares now available to more destinations


Our hand baggage only fares are now available to purchase on new routes across Europe, the Middle East, Asia Pacific and Indian Subcontinent.

The best value way to travel for guests who don’t need to take checked baggage, our hand baggage only fares are available on 26 point-to-point routes and more than 230 connecting routes, all with less than a six-hour flight time.

Find out more

Etihad Airways offers free stopovers for The Residence guests flying on confirmed Etihad Airways tickets through Abu Dhabi.


Guests of The Residence will be treated to two free nights at the Khaleej Suite at Emirates Palace. Contact VIP Travel Concierge + 971 (0)2 599 0380 or email to avail Free stay at Emirates Palace.

Book in First or selected Business fares for our guests to enjoy the convenience of our Etihad Chauffeur service within the UAE, operated with a full Mercedes Benz fleet of limousines.


Our limo service provides transport between Abu Dhabi International Airport and all destinations in the UAE.


Guests travelling in The Residence will receive complimentary chauffeur services at all A380 destinations.


Your guests can choose their preferred way to travel to and from the airport. But we go far beyond that, with our range of onward transport options:


  • Etihad Chauffeur – complimentary for The Residence worldwide, and in the UAE for First and selected Business bookings. Please read more on eligibility in our Policy Library
  • Airport transfers – door-to-door car service in the rest of the world
  • Hire cars – preferred rates for our guests with our partner, Hertz
  • Etihad Coach – guests must pre-book this free service between Dubai and Al Ain and Abu Dhabi International Airport
  • Rail – onward rail transport is available for guests travelling to destinations in Germany and France.
  • Airpass – a convenient way to book multiple flights in one step – choose between two to ten one-way flights or train journeys, all on one ticket.

With a little planning ahead, you can help your guests create a smooth and simple journey.

On the day of your flight, guests should arrive at the airport early to give themselves plenty of time to complete the necessary checks and procedures.


Please refer to the table.

For the Hajj pilgrimage season, we want to ensure a smooth experience for Hajj passengers in both Jeddah and Medina airports.


In addition to a guest's allowance of hand baggage and checked baggage, Etihad Airways also permits a guest to carry the following amount of ZamZam water free of charge.


Please give the following advice to guests:


  • Hand Baggage:    A maximum of 100ml, carried in a transparent, re-sealable bag
  • Checked Baggage:    A maximum of 5 litres, suitably packaged
  • Arrive at the airport a minimum of four hours ahead of flight departure time
  • Expect a two to three hour wait at immigration and security
  • ZamZam water must only be purchased through authorised agents, for a price of SAR 9
  • ZamZam water must be checked-in separately. Any ZamZam water placed inside checked baggage will be confiscated by Airport Security
  • Once through immigration and security, guests should proceed immediately to the boarding gate to ensure that flights leave on time and connections (if any) are not at risk


From 14 May 2019, guests will be able to check-in on our website or through our app 30 hours before their flight.


As soon as online check-in opens, guests will be able to reserve an Economy Standard seat for free, and select their seat for connecting flights departing within 48 hours


For more information contact your local Etihad Airways representative.



Free Abu Dhabi stopover


Your guests can now enjoy a free two-night stopover in Abu Dhabi until 20 December 2020.


Book now for our free Abu Dhabi stopover before 20 December 2020, for travel until 20 December 2020.


Other types of stopover:


2-for-1 stopovers

When your guests fly book a two-night stay in Abu Dhabi, the second night is free! With over 60 hotels to choose from, your guests can also book 2-for-1 activities across the capital.


Log in to book now (for registered accounts)


Abu Dhabi Transit stopovers

6 – 12 hours’ transit time? We have special deals for your guests to enjoy a round of golf or some time by the pool at Yas Links Abu Dhabi for only USD 40.


Book now 

Note: Due to COVID-19 restrictions, our lounges in Abu Dhabi are closed. We will reopen them as soon as we can. 


All Etihad guests are welcome to use our lounges at Abu Dhabi International Airport. Access is complimentary for First and Business guests and available for a small fee for Economy guests. All guests can pay to upgrade to the next class of lounge.


Please refer to the table.


Guests can enjoy great food and drinks, find a quiet spot to work or simply get some rest before their flight.


The Residence: Guests of The Residence will be looked after by the Etihad Butler in their own, exclusive Lounge. The Residence Lounge has a separate entrance, spacious seating area, private dining room, prayer room and shower room.


First Lounge & Spa: Guests can enjoy fine dining, signature drinks, complimentary and payable treatments in the Six Senses Spa, a fitness room, showers, a relaxation room, a cigar lounge, a clothes-pressing service and a children’s play room. Located in T3, Abu Dhabi International Airport.


Etihad Airways Premium Lounges: There are two Premium Lounges, located in T1 and T3 of Abu Dhabi International Airport, where guests can dine, relax, work and freshen up before their flights. A family room and play area are available for our younger guests. Our T3 lounge also has a Six Senses Spa (payable), a prayer room and ablution facilities, a business centre and a private area for extra space and privacy (payable).


US Premium Lounge: For guests travelling to the US, this lounge offers comfortable seating, light refreshments and extra space to relax.


Arrivals Lounge: Guests who have arrived into Abu Dhabi with Etihad can freshen up with a shower, use the business centre, have their clothes pressed and enjoy a selection of drinks and snacks.


The House:  Etihad Airways have partnered with No.1 Lounges to launch an exciting new concept: The House.  The House offers a contemporary and stylish twist on pre-flight hospitality.  Operating in London, Melbourne and Sydney, The House offers a unique, white-linen dining experience and a more extensive bar service, as well as the choice of an à la carte menu or a self-service buffet.  Guests flying in The Residence, First or Business will continue to be invited to use The House, whilst Economy guests are able to enjoy paid-for access prior to their flight.

We offer special meals onboard our aircraft for guests who have religious, dietary or medical needs and for children. All meals are Halal.


Select special meals in the booking system.


Check the codes and descriptions of special meals

US Customs and Border Protection (CBP) facility


Etihad is the only airline in the region to offer a US immigration facility within Abu Dhabi Airport. This means that guests flying to the US will complete US immigration checks before they fly, not after landing.


They will then arrive into the US domestic terminal and skip international immigration queues.


It’s important to tell your guests:


  • Check-in for Etihad flights to the US closes two hours before the flight, so they must arrive at the airport in plenty of time.
  • All guests must go through the US Immigration facility, located near gates 58 – 61 in Terminal 3, no later than 60 minutes before the flight. If guests are late to report to the US Immigration facility, they may be denied boarding.
  • Guests must check all the restricted and prohibited items that they can bring into the US before they pack.
  • Guests’ date of entry into the US on their passport will be the date they depart from Abu Dhabi, and not the date they arrive in the US.
  • Baggage will be sent to guests’ final destination in the US.


Please read further information here.


Once guests have cleared the US immigration facility, they are welcome to use our US Premium Lounge. Access is complimentary for First and Business Class guests, and available at a fee of AED 185 / US $50 for Economy Class guests.


From 17 February 2019, UAE nationals are exempt from obtaining pre-entry visas to travel to Russia. Russian nationals are also exempt from obtaining pre-entry visas to visit the UAE.


Find more information about visas here