· Tokyo and Nagoya, Japan
Direct flights from Abu Dhabi to these Japanese cities will begin in February 2010. The idea is to bridge the cities with Etihad based on their already strong automotive and hospitality connections. And there's this: "Current statistics indicate that 330 Japanese companies operate in the UAE. More than 3,500 Japanese nationals reside in the country and 8,800 in the Middle East region."
· Hyderabad, India
Here we have Etihad hooking up with another big business city, although this time in India. The airline just recently launched this direct route from Abu Dhabi, but will increase to daily flights beginning in January. Etihad already jets to New Delhi, Chennai, Mumbai, Kozhikode, Thiruvananthapuram and Kochi, so they've got India on lock-down.
· Codeshare with Flybe
Just announced today, Etihad has signed codeshare agreement with Britain's Flybe airline, making transfers from Etihad's London and Manchester flights to Flybe's regional British destinations and a host of their other 180 destinations smoother and valid for frequent flyer miles. Now, if you're looking at an odd itinerary of Abu Dhabi to Southampton, it can be done.