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Etihad Airways Connecting Flights


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This is an Etihad Airways connecting flights guide. 

This guide covers everything from how to book connecting flights with Etihad Airways to baggage policy and air passengers rights (you’ll learn about delay and cancellation compensation). Etihad is one of the two flag carrier airlines of the United Arab Emirates. With a hub at Abu Dhabi International Airport, the airline operates flights to more than 80 passenger and cargo destinations around the world. Etihad is one of the world’s best and most popular airlines.

Did you miss a connecting flight? File a compensation claim online.

Etihad Airways plane
Etihad Airways plane


Is It Protected?

Yes, it’s a protected connection.

Traditional airlines sell airline-protected connecting flights. It’s more convenient and more safe than self-transfer flights. You don’t need a visa for connecting flights like this.

Unless you book flights separately.

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Baggage Rules

Airline takes care of your baggage.

Mostly, you will check in baggage only once — you won’t have to recheck baggage for every flight. This is how it works with full-service airlines and airline-protected connecting flights.

Baggage allowance depends on the ticket, destination and occasionally some other factors. 


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1. Etihad Airways Connecting Flights

Etihad Airways is a full-service traditional airline.

Just like most full-service traditional airlines, Etihad Airways operates airline-protected connecting flights. Such flights ensure a safe transfer if direct flight is not available. If you miss your connection due to delay or cancellation of the previous flight, you will be booked on a new flight free of charge. This is why airline-protected connecting flights are better than unprotected self-transfers.

Airline-protected connecting flights are:

  • Safer. Your airline takes care of flight problems.
  • More convenient. Baggage transfer is automatic.
  • Easier to book. You book several flights as a single journey.

Yes, Etihad Airways sells airline-protected connecting flights.

1.1 Connecting Flights, One Airline

In some situations, your Etihad connecting flight will be operated only by Etihad. It will consist of two or more Etihad flights. All of them will be serviced by Etihad airplanes and Etihad staff. But keep in mind, that it’s not the case with every Etihad Airways flight.

1.2 Etihad Airways Codeshare Partners

Sometimes airlines share their flights.

Airlines do it to widen their flight network. Thanks to this, airlines can offer direct and connecting flights even to destinations they don’t service. If you book a connecting flight with Etihad Airways, and see that a part of this connecting flight is operated by another airline, don’t worry. It’s a common practice in the aviation industry. You are still protected, as the airlines are collaborating in a way that makes it possible.

Connecting flights with different airlines is a norm in the aviation industry. These kind of flights are called codeshare flights, and airlines collaborating — codeshare partners.

What you should know is that:

  • If you miss a connecting flight through no fault of your own, don’t worry. If it’s an airline-protected flight, the airline will put you on an alternate flight (for free). As long as it’s an Etihad connection booked from Etihad (they are marketing airline), they are responsible for finding you a new flight, even if a part of this flight is operated by a partner airline.
  • If your flight is heavily delayed, cancelled or overbooked, compensation is paid by airline operating this particular flight. If it’s operated by some other airline, not Etihad, then they are called operating airline — they have to pay compensation when it’s due.

See a list of Etihad Airways codeshare partners here.

Dubai Airport Entrance
Dubai Airport Departures

2. What If Etihad Airways Cancels a Flight?

Why is Etihad Airways cancelling flights?

This happens for a number of reasons: bad weather, strikes, staff shortage, various technical problems, airport congestion, security issues. These are just some of the most common reasons.

2.1 One of Your Flights Is Cancelled

Etihad Airways is a major airline in the United Arab Emirates.

It’s not a European airline.

But despite this fact, on some of their flights you are protected.

According to the EU Regulation 261/2004, they must:

  • Offer you a choice between a new flight and full refund.
  • Offer you assistance at the airport (you have a right to care).

This applies to all their flights departing from Europe.

And if as a result you’re going to miss your connecting flight, it’s Etihad’s responsibility to offer you an alternate flight to your final destination. It must be offered to you for free. If your flight departs from Europe (EU, UK, EEA), you may opt for a full refund from Etihad, too.

You may have a right to compensation (more on this below).

Did you miss a connecting flight? File a compensation claim online.

2.2 All Your Flights Are Cancelled

Overall, for you as a passenger, the options are the same.

According to the EU Regulation 261/2004, Etihad Airways must:

  • Offer you a choice between a new flight and full refund.
  • Offer you assistance at the airport if it’s a last-minute cancellation and you are already at the airport (you have a right to care).

This applies to all their flights departing from Europe.

Refund must be paid within seven days.

You may have a right to EU flight cancellation compensation.

2.3 Etihad Airways Refund for Cancellation

Yes, you have a right to ask for a refund.

If your Etihad flight departs from Europe, and it happens to be cancelled, you may opt for a full refund. This refund has to be paid by bank transfer (within seven days). What if the airline offers coupons? If the flight departed from the EU, EEA or UK, you have a right to ask money.

Hong Kong airport layover
Hong Kong airport

3. Etihad Airways Missed Connecting Flight

Why do people miss connecting flights?

You could miss a connecting flight because your previous flight was delayed or cancelled. It is one of the most common reasons. Or you could miss your flight because of airport congestion or long queues.

3.1 What Happens If You Miss Etihad Airways Connection?

If it’s your fault that it happened — it’s your responsibility.

If it’s not your fault, then your airline has to take care of that. If you booked a flight from Etihad Airways, it doesn’t even matter if the flight is operated by Etihad Airways or one of its partners, you should contact Etihad Airways. The airline has to offer you assistance and a new flight ticket (for free). 

According to the EU Regulation 261/2004, they must:

  • Take you to your final destination as soon as possible.
  • Offer you assistance at the airport (you have a right to care).

Again, the last two points apply only to flights from Europe.

On other routes, the airline still has to offer you a new flight.

Read more: Missed Connecting Flight Due to Delay 

3.2 Right to Compensation from Etihad Airways

Sometimes you have a right to compensation.

If your Etihad flight departs from Europe (its origin is in Europe), it arrives at your destination 3 hours (or more) later than planned and it’s due to the fault of the airline — you are entitled to compensation.

Flight cancelled less than 2 weeks before the trip?

You might be entitled to flight cancellation compensation.


File a Claim Online

3.3 Right to Care from Etihad Airways

On Etihad Airways flights departing from Europe you have a right to care.

According to the EU Regulation 261/2004 airline should provide:

  • Free food and drinks in a reasonable relation to the waiting time.
  • Free hotel accommodation if a stay of one or more nights is necessary.
  • Free airport transfer to hotel and back.
  • Plus, two telephone calls, telex or fax messages, or e-mails. 

With Etihad Airways the regulation applies only to flights departing from European airports. With European airlines, like KLMLOT Polish AirlinesWizz Air and British Airways, it applies to all their flights.

When it comes to air passenger rights, unless otherwise stated, we talk about air passenger rights in the EU, EEA and UK. When we say Europe or European, we mean EU, EEA or UK. This is done for the simplicity, since the according laws in these countries are about the same.

Istanbul Airport
Istanbul Airport

4. How to Book Connecting Flights with Etihad Airways?

You can do it directly from Etihad Airways or via a third-party.

The best way is to book directly from Etihad Airways. But it’s not always the cheapest option. If you have found a cheaper Etihad Airways connecting flight on some of the third party websites, you can book it there. For this, we recommend popular sites such as or

How to Book?

Airline website (directly).

This is the easiest way to book a connecting flight. It’s also the safest way to book a connection. You make a single booking, have a single reservation code and the booking includes several flights. Sometimes they are all with one airline, other times – two or more. Anyway, in this case, you can be 100% sure that you have a proper connecting flight.

Other Option

Flight booking websites.

Few examples:,,

Pay attention to the details. Because some of these sites are only search engines, and sellers are other websites. Apart from that, they often sell both airline-protected connecting flights and self-transfer flights. If it’s a self-transfer, know that it comes with its own risks, and there are things you should take into account. Self-transfer is not the same thing as airline-protected transfer. 

For extra protection, buy also a travel insurance covering flight disruptions, or book with sites like, who offer extra protection.

With you are more protected than normally.

Read more: How to Book Connecting Flights?

Two backpacks

5. Etihad Airways Connecting Flights: Baggage

Since Etihad Airways is a traditional airline, everything’s very easy.

Baggage rules on connecting flights with Etihad Airways are simple.

In short, Etihad Airways takes care of your baggage. Check your baggage when you are checking at your origin airport. In most cases, you will be checked all the way through your final destination, and so will be your luggage. You won’t have to collect and recheck baggage between flights. Unless you have a self-transfer, or you’re traveling through a country that requires everyone to collect and recheck their baggage (e.g., US).

If you aren’t sure if your bag will be sent to your final destination or not, ask the staff at the check in or baggage drop counter. They will tell you if you will need to recheck your bag yourself.

5.1 Baggage Transfer: Different Airlines

What happens if there are several airlines?

What if one of your flights is operated by different airline, not Etihad Airways? As we already talked, you may experience this, because Etihad Airways does share some of its flights with its codeshare partners. In this situation the rules are the same — your baggage is being taken care of by an airline. In most situations you won’t have to worry about it.

Read more: 

5.2 Etihad Airways Free Baggage Allowance

Baggage allowance varies — it’s not the same on all flights.

Ir depends on the airline, travel class, ticket type and destination. You can see your baggage allowance in your booking confirmation. If you are booking a ticket, you will see baggage allowance when you are choosing the travel class and ticket type — it’s always there somewhere.

5.3 Economy Light

This is the cheapest option for long-haul flights.

Economy Light comes without free baggage allowance.

We see this all across the industry. Full-service traditional airlines are offering also tickets without free checked baggage allowance. The wording is also often the same — Economy Light. So, if you see this, most likely it’s without checked baggage (carry on baggage only).

When you see cheap Etihad flights, pay attention to this. Etihad offers “hand baggage only” fares. This fare is not available on every flight, though. If you travel with checked baggage, this cheapest fare is not for you.

Read more: What Is Carry-on Bag / Baggage?

Colonial buildings in Mumbai
Colonial buildings in Mumbai

6. Connecting Flight Examples

Here are two connecting flight examples with Etihad Airways.

6.1 Protected Connecting Flights with Etihad Airways (Most Common)

For this example I’ll use the website of Etihad Airways.

Let’s assume that you want to fly from Riga (Latvia) to Mumbai (India).

You have searched for flights for October 18, and these are the options:

Riga to Mumbai Connecting Flight with Etihad
Riga to Mumbai Connecting Flight with Etihad

On their website Etihad sells protected connecting flights. However, as we can see, not all of the flights are operated by Etihad. For example, the first leg always is operated by airBaltic because Etihad doesn’t fly from Riga.

As you can see total flight duration, price and stopover airport vary. You need to choose one flight. Let’s assume that you wan’t the cheapest and fastest option. Let’s pick No 1. It takes 16 hrs 20 minutes, and costs 551.55 EUR. There are two stops: in AMS (Amsterdam) and AUH (Abu Dhabi).

The number of stops can vary, too.

But it’s not the case in this example.

6.2 Self-Transfer Flights with Etihad Airways

Now, let’s assume, that your itinerary is slightly more complex.

You want to fly from Riga to Mumbai, and from Mumbai onwards to Jaipur to explore Rajasthan. But before that you want to explore Mumbai, one of the most popular tourist destinations in India. 

  1. You can book a connecting flight to Mumbai, like in the example above. For example, you’re taking the cheapest and fastest option, the first one, which arrives in Mumbai at 02:35 am. 
  2. And then you go to, or some other flight search engine, and book a flight from Mumbai to Jaipur. Leaving yourself, let’s say, 30 hours in Mumbai. 

Your Riga — Mumbai flight is airline protected. Even that leg which is operated by airBaltic. Because this flight is a connecting flight booked from Etihad. If your first or second flight is delayed or cancelled, and you miss your connection because of that, the airline will book you on another flight for free.

However, the last flight, Mumbai – Jaipur, is a separately booked flight. It is a self transfer. You will have to check in for this flight separately. If you have checked baggage, you will need to recheck it, too. Take this into account and leave yourself plenty of time for this layover (minimum 3-4 hours).

What is your experience with Etihad Airways? Have you ever missed a connecting flight with Etihad Airways? How did the airline solve this? Did you receive compensation from Etihad Airways?

Featured photo by Fariz Priandana

About the author:

Co-founder and Editor at Connecting Flights Guide

Una is an organized globetrotter and foodie who’s been living a digital nomad lifestyle since 2013. She always starts her day early with a good book before diving into work. Apart from traveling and aviation, her other passions include gym, hiking and cycling. Una is also a strong proponent of AI technology. She firmly believes in its potential to simplify life and has often advocated for its wider adoption in our day-to-day activities. Her favorite airlines are Qatar Airways, Emirates, and KLM.


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Connecting Flights Guide

Your go-to guide to air travel rules and regulations. Connecting flights, self transfer, onward tickets and more – we want you to understand air travel better

This article may contain compensated links. Learn more in our disclaimer.

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