Dubai-based budget air carrier FlyDubai on Tuesday said it would start its proposed India operations with a flight service between Dubai and Lucknow from June 2.

The Dubai-Lucknow flight would operate three times a week, it said in a press release. The flight would operate on Mondays, Wednesdays and Fridays, while the return service would run on Tuesdays, Thursdays and Saturdays.

“FlyDubai is responding to a shortage of direct international flights to Lucknow, which offers convenient onward connections to major metropolitan centres like Delhi, Mumbai and Kolkata,” FlyDubai’s Chief Executive Officer, Ghaith Al Ghaith, said.

Stating that India is an important market for FlyDubai, he said that over a period of time, the air carrier plans to expand its operations to serve more Indian cities that do not have direct air links with the UAE.

The airline has announced a one-way fare (including all taxes and one piece of hand luggage) of Rs. 6,300 for travel between Lucknow and Dubai.

“An estimated five million Indian expatriates live and work in the Gulf, around one million in the UAE alone.

This represents a huge number of people, who need to travel between the two nations,” Ghaith said.

The airline currently operates across Beirut, Jordan, Syria, Egypt, Africa, Qatar, Azerbaijan, Sudan, Bahrain, Nepal, Oman and Kuwait.