NEOM Airlines to debut in 2024, feature 'supersonic' flight by 2026

The airline intends to invest in cutting-edge aircraft such as electric, hydrogen-powered, or supersonic planes with next-generation interiors.
Baba Tamim
Representational image: Supersonic flight.
Representational image: Supersonic flight.


NEOM Airlines, the new airline from the $500 billion mega-city development in Saudi Arabia, is scheduled to launch operations by the end of 2024.

The airline plans to start operations at the NEOM Bay Airport, which is already open for Saudia internal flights as well as flights to London and Dubai, before moving to the recently constructed Neom International Airport, as per reports on Thursday.

"The airline will be operational at the end of 2024 and will be focused on enabling travel for tourists, residents, and commercial partners to and from NEOM," said Klaus Goersch, the airline's CEO.

To meet the high demand for travel from tourists, residents, and commercial partners, the airline will initially use existing planes retrofitted with existing technology. 

However, beginning in 2026, the airline intends to invest in cutting-edge aircraft such as "electric, hydrogen-powered, or supersonic planes" with next-generation interiors.

NEOM Airlines to debut in 2024, feature 'supersonic' flight by 2026
NEOM - The Line.

By implementing biometric facial recognition technology, replacing departure gates, and eliminating the need for a visa, NEOM Airlines hopes to reinvent air travel.

"Imagine if biometrics were advanced enough to recognize you via facial recognition as soon as you walked in a building, security clearing you for travel without the need for even going through a gate – let alone having to bother with a visa," said Goersch.

In-seat gaming and chat technologies, 6G Wi-Fi, huge screens at every seat, and seamless in-flight entertainment are all features that NEOM Airlines wants to offer.

The CEO talks about passengers' bag pick-up service from their homes or places of business and brought to their destination and the biometric technology that has improved enough to recognize them upon entry into a structure using facial recognition. 

"Just imagine if your bags were collected from your home or office and delivered to the hotel or residence you were going to," he expressed. 

Reimagining air travel with NEOM

Goersch, a former chief operating officer of British Airways and Air Canada, indicated that NEOM Airlines seeks to make the traveler journey as frictionless as possible in an article on the company website, revealing the ambitious objectives.

The $500 billion mega-city development in Saudi Arabia's northwest has chosen AECOM as a managing partner for NEOM International Airport (NIA), its international airport.

In addition to master planning, design, and construction services, AECOM will also offer project management consultant services for the NIA, including services for testing, commissioning, operational preparedness, activation, and transition.

The NEOM initiative intends to concurrently develop a new airport, a new airline, and a new destination, giving the airline the ability to completely reimagine air travel. 

NEOM Airlines claims to set the standard for seamless, effective, and comfortable air travel by integrating biometric technology and cutting-edge aircraft.

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