Qatar Airways’ CEO Al Baker: European airlines are “inefficient”, expands flights to Istanbul Sabiha Gökçen Airport and Edinburgh
Qatar Airways‘ (Doha) CEO Akbar Al Baker in an interview with AFP and quoted by ArabianBusiness.com, termed European airlines as being “inefficient”. The comment came in response to complaints by European carriers, especially Air France-KLM, of unfair competition from the Gulf’s “Big Three”.
Read the full article: CLICK HERE
In other news, Qatar Airways will expand its flights to Istanbul Sabiha Gökçen Airport from March 29, 2015, as it increases its frequency to a double-daily service.
The new daily flight, operated by a two-class, Airbus A320 aircraft, will depart Doha at 0945, arriving in Sabiha Gökçen Airport at 1400 and return from Sabiha Gökçen Airport at 1500, arriving back in Doha at 1855.
Qatar Airways recently celebrated its 10 years of successful operations to Turkey. The airline began services to Istanbul Ataturk International Airport in 2004 marking Qatar Airways’ first destination in Turkey, and due to popular passenger demand has been steadily increasing its number of flights to the country.
Qatar Airways currently operates to three destinations in Turkey – Istanbul Sabiha Gökçen Airport (daily flights), Istanbul Ataturk Airport (10-flights-a-week) and Ankara (four-weekly-flights).
The nonstop four-flights-a-week service from Doha to Istanbul Sabiha Gökçen Airport was launched on May 22nd this year, marking Qatar Airways’ addition of its third route to Turkey. Due to an increase in demand, Qatar Airways added three additional flights from October 26 to Sabiha Gökçen Airport, marking the launch of daily flights to the airport.
Qatar Airways will also operate a daily nonstop scheduled service from Doha’s Hamad International Airport to Edinburgh Airport from May 1, 2015. The announcement comes just six months after the successful launch of the five-weekly service on the route and reinforces the airline’s commitment to add additional frequencies on the route, which it announced at the launch.
The daily QR 027 outbound service and QR 028 inbound service is operated by a Boeing 787 Dreamliner.
Edinburgh is Qatar Airways’ third destination in the UK, preceded by London in 1997 and Manchester in 2003. The airline currently operates six flights a day from London Heathrow nonstop to Doha, including ‘Business One’, the all-business class A319. The airline also operates 10 flights per week from Manchester nonstop to Doha.
Photo: CEO Al Baker (Qatar Airways).
Airbus (Toulouse) has announced the new A350-900 received its Type Certification on November 12 from the Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) (Washington).
FAA Associate Administrator for Aviation Safety Peggy Gilligan and Airbus Group Inc. Chairman Allan McArtor were among the signing authorities at the official ceremony. The certified aircraft is powered by Rolls-Royce Trent XWB engines. This milestone follows the A350-900 Type Certification awarded by the European Aviation Safety Agency (EASA) on September 30.
According to Airbus, “The A350-900’s respective FAA and EASA certification awards come after Airbus successfully finished a stringent program of certification trials which took the A350-900 airframe and systems well beyond their design limits to ensure all airworthiness criteria are fully met. The fleet of five test A350-900 aircraft completed the certification flight test campaign, on time, having accumulated more than 2,600 flight test hours to create and successfully achieve one of the aviation industry’s most thorough and efficient test programs ever developed for a commercial airliner.”
Copyright Photo: Antony J. Best/AirlinersGallery.com. One of the five test aircraft, the pictured A350-941 F-WZNW (msn 004), wears partial Qatar Airways markings at Farnborough where it was showcased. Qatar Airways will be the first airline to take delivery of the new type.
Al Maha Airways (subsidiary of Qatar Airways) (Riyadh) will soon take delivery of its first Airbus A320. The first A320 has been painted at Toulouse pending delivery. The new domestic carrier of Saudi Arabia will launch operations “soon” according to its website. Previously the new subsidiary was expecting to enter the Saudi market in November.
Al Maha means “Oryx” in Arabic, the symbol of Qatar Airways.
Copyright Photo: Eurospot/AirlinersGallery.com. Airbus A320-214 F-WWBV (msn 6347) departs from Toulouse today (October 29) on a test flight. Green is the national color of the Kingdom. The first Airbus A320 will become HZ-ALA on delivery.
Qatar Airways (Doha) will assign the new Airbus A380 to the Doha-Bangkok route starting on January 5, 2015.
Copyright Photo: Antony J. Best/AirlinersGallery.com. Airbus A380-861 A7-APA (msn 137) climbs away from the runway at London’s Heathrow Airport.
Video: The painting of the first Airbus A380:
Video: A classic Qatar Airways commercial from 2013:
Qatar Airways (Doha) has announced Frankfurt will be the first destination for its new Airbus A350-900. The fast-growing airline issued this statement:
Qatar Airways has announced Frankfurt as the first route for its highly anticipated A350 Xtra Wide Body (XWB) aircraft.
As the Global Launch operator of the A350 XWB, the program will achieve another major milestone once the airline receives its first aircraft before the end of this year.
Upon delivery, following several weeks of induction preparation, Qatar Airways will then be set to introduce its first commercial service to the German business hub city of Frankfurt.
Frankfurt will be operated nonstop daily with an A350 starting from January of next year.
Qatar Airways currently flies twice-daily to Frankfurt, and the double pairings will both be operated by an A350 on the route.
Initially flights QR 067/068 will be the first pairing with the A350, followed shortly by flights QR 069/70.
The 283 seats are divided across a dual cabin layout, configured in Business Class and Economy Class; 36 seats and 247 seats respectively.
Qatar Airways has 80 Airbus A350s on order, and expects to induct the first eight production aircraft into its fleet before 2015 year-end.
Before the end of this year the airline will reach 146 destinations, launching new services to Djibouti, in the Republic of Djibouti, on October 26 and Asmara, in Eritrea on December 4.
Qatar Airways presently flies to 144 key business and leisure destinations across Europe, the Middle East, Africa, Asia Pacific, North America and South America, and operates a modern mixed fleet of narrow and wide-body aircraft.
Qatar Airways took delivery of its first double-decker A380 aircraft in September this year and it is currently operated daily on the Doha – London Heathrow route.
In other news, Qatar Airways Cargo has announced the launch of freighters to Stavanger in Norway, effective November 3, 2014.
Stavanger will be served once a week by an Airbus A330F freighter, with the freighter making a stop at Brussels before heading to Stavanger Airport and then returning to Doha.
Stavanger is known as the European oil and gas capital, with many of the major oil and gas companies and supplier companies having their Norwegian headquarters located in Stavanger. Other areas of activity and business include fishing, shipping, finance, culture, food and renewable energy. There is also great demand for Norwegian salmon worldwide, while imports include considerable quantities of motor vehicles and other transport equipment, raw materials, and industrial equipment.
With the introduction of scheduled freighter services, Qatar Airways Cargo will provide air transportation to these growing industries through the Doha hub, to and from more than 140 destinations worldwide.
The airline received its seventh Boeing 777 freighter on October 2, 2014, bringing up the total freighter fleet to 10.
Copyright Photo: Airbus/Qatar Airways. The pictured Airbus A350-941 F-WZFA (msn 006) will become A7-ALA on the official handover.
EASA certifies the Airbus A350-900 for up to 370 minutes ETOPS, the first delivery A350 makes its first flight
Airbus (Toulouse) has announced it has received approval from the European Aviation Safety Agency (EASA) for operators of the new Airbus A350-900 for ETOPS (Extended-range Twin engine aircraft Operations) “Beyond 180 minutes” diversion time with an option for up to 370 minutes maximum diversion time. Airbus issued this statement and new logo:
The A350-900 is the first new airliner ever to be approved before EIS for “ETOPS Beyond 180 minutes”.
This includes an option for up to 370 minute maximum diversion time, for the most efficient, reliable and direct long-range routings of any two-engined aircraft.
The European Aviation Safety Agency (EASA) has approved the new A350-900 airliner for ETOPS (Extended-range Twin engine aircraft Operations) ‘Beyond 180 minutes’ diversion time. This significant achievement marks the A350 XWB as being the first new aircraft type ever to receive such a level of ETOPS approval prior to entry into service (EIS). Moreover, this means that operators will benefit from the most efficient, reliable and direct long-range routings of any two-engined aircraft. The FAA’s respective ETOPS certification of the A350 is expected soon.
The approval which includes ETOPS 180 minutes in the basic specification also includes provisions for “ETOPS 300 minutes” and “ETOPS 370 minutes” depending on individual operator selection. The latter option extends the diversion distance up to an unprecedented 2,500 nautical miles – a distance which corresponds to a maximum ETOPS diversion time for the A350 of approximately 370 minutes, at one-engine-inoperative speed under standard atmospheric conditions.
A350 operators will thus be able to serve new direct non-limiting routings, compared with a 180 minutes ETOPS diversion time: The ETOPS 370 minutes option will be of particular benefit for new direct southern routes such as between Australia, South Africa and South America; while the ETOPS 300 minutes option will facilitate more efficient transoceanic routes across the North and Mid-Pacific – such as from South East Asia to US, and Australasia to the US. Meanwhile, operators flying on existing routes (currently flown with up to 180 minutes diversion time) will be able to traverse a straighter and consequently quicker and more fuel efficient path, and also have access to more – and possibly better equipped – en-route diversion airports if needed.
The granting of this ETOPS capability prior to the A350’s EIS is a testimony to the development teams’ emphasis on securing the aircraft’s design and systems maturity, which had to be demonstrated as equivalent to that of a proven ETOPS aircraft such as its widebody sibling – the versatile and extremely reliable A330. The latter has proven the robustness of its systems as demonstrated in over 30 million flight hours in almost seven million flights.
Around 70 percent of A350 flight hours will be ETOPS. At the end of September 2014, the A350 XWB had won 750 orders from 39 customers worldwide.
“ETOPS” is a set of rules initially introduced by International Civil Aviation Organisation (ICAO) in the mid-1980s to allow commercial operations with twin-engine aircraft on routes beyond 60min flying time from the nearest airport and which were previously operated only by aircraft with more than two engines. These rules, which are now named “EDTO” (Extended Diversion Time Operations) by ICAO have been progressively revised to allow operations beyond 180min diversion time. In 2009, the Airbus A330 became the first airliner to gain an ETOPS “Beyond 180 minutes” certification, when it was granted an ETOPS 240 minutes certification by EASA. As of today, Airbus twin-engined airliners have accumulated over 16 million ETOPS flight hours, out of which over 12 million have been accumulated by the A330 models.
TopCopyright Photo: Eurospot/AirlinersGallery.com. Airbus A350-941 F-WZFA (msn 006), the first delivery model going to Qatar Airways as A7-ALA performs a taxi test. F-WZFA flew today (October 16) for the first time at Toulouse.
Bottom Copyright Photo: Airbus. Qatar Airways’ future first delivery to be registered as A7-ALA takes to the skies for the first time today in Toulouse. Qatar Airways will become the first operator of the A350 XWB when it takes delivery of its first aircraft later this year. The airline has 80 A350s on order, including 43 A350-900 and 37 of the larger A350-1000 models.
Qatar Airways Aircraft Slide Show:
Gulfstream Aerospace Corporation (Savannah) has signed a Memorandum of Understanding (MOU) with Qatar Airways (Doha) for the purchase of up to 20 aircraft. The agreement was announced in conjunction with Gulfstream’s introduction of an all-new family of business jets, the Gulfstream G500 and G600.
The Memorandum of Understanding establishes the initial agreement for Qatar Airways to order up to 20 Gulfstream aircraft, including firm orders and options for the all-new, wide-cabin G500 and the flagship G650ER. The Memorandum of Understanding marks the beginning of a new relationship between Qatar Airways and Gulfstream.
Said His Excellency Mr. Akbar Al Baker, group chief executive, Qatar Airways, “Qatar Executive has been on an accelerated growth path since its inception and is held to an exceptional standard of quality that is widely known by our global clientele. In order to keep pace with the future strategic growth plans of our private jet division, the fleet is being expanded with aircraft that meet the needs of our guests, providing a wide range of options. Today’s announcement of the Memorandum of Understanding for G650ERs and G500s signals a next step for Qatar Executive’s relatively young and buoyant history.”
From its start in 2009, Qatar Executive has rapidly risen to become a leader in air charter services for individuals, families, businesses, corporations and governments. As part of Qatar Airways, one of the world’s leading airlines, Qatar Executive’s clients are assured an excellent charter experience.
The G500′s all-new design optimizes speed, wide-cabin comfort and efficiency, and features new industry-leading safety technologies. The G500 can fly 5,000 nautical miles/9,260 kilometers at Mach 0.85 or 3,800 nm/7,038 km at Mach 0.90. The aircraft will link Doha, Qatar, nonstop with London, Geneva and Paris at Mach 0.90 and is expected to enter service in 2018.
The first flight of the G500 is scheduled for 2015. Gulfstream projects it will receive type certification from the U.S. Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) and European Aviation Safety Agency in 2017.
The G650ER, an ultra-long-range aircraft, can travel 7,500 nm/13,890 km at Mach 0.85 and 6,400 nm/11,853 km at Mach 0.90. The G650ER can fly nonstop from Doha to New York at Mach 0.90 and nonstop from Doha to Los Angeles at Mach 0.85. Announced in May 2014, the G650ER recently received FAA certification.
The G650ER and the G500 are also distinguished by their cabin environments. Designed with wide cross-sections that maximize passenger comfort and aircraft performance, both aircraft feature 100 percent fresh air and industry-leading cabin altitudes that boost mental alertness and productivity while reducing fatigue. Gulfstream’s signature large oval windows allow natural light to pour into the cabins.
Qatar Executive was established as part of Qatar Airways’ ongoing robust global growth strategy and continued commitment to the Middle East and global business travel community.
Headquartered at Hamad International Airport in Doha, Qatar Executive’s jet services are available for worldwide charter onboard the operator’s wholly-owned fleet. Qatar Executive’s service portfolio includes aircraft management, airliner charter, maintenance and FBO services.
Images: Gulfstream Aerospace.
Qatar Airways Aircraft Slide Show:
Video: The G500 and G650ER introduction ceremony:
Qatar Airways (Doha) today (October 10) finally inaugurated Airbus A380 service on the Doha-London (Heathrow) route becoming the 12th airline to operate the Super Jumbo.
Twelve airlines have taken delivery of more than 140 A380s, which are operating on routes around the world as of September 2014. In total, more than 65 million passengers have flown on Airbus’ 21st century flagship jetliner since its 2007 service entry.
Singapore Airlines took delivery of the first A380 in October 2007, and began operations with Singapore-Sydney service. This carrier also is successfully using its A380s on long-haul routes to destinations such as London, Paris and Zurich, as well as for the approximately 3-hour-plus Singapore-to-Hong Kong flight, and on the intra-Asia service linking Singapore with Tokyo.
Emirates – the largest single A380 customer – has expanded its route network since inaugurating operations with the double-deck jetliner in July 2008. In addition to service from Dubai to Bangkok, Beijing, Hong Kong, London, New York, Paris, Seoul, Sydney/Auckland and Toronto, Emirates is now flying A380s on the shorter-haul, but high-density Dubai-Jeddah route.
Service on the North Atlantic was introduced by Air France, which has operated its prestigious Paris-New York flight with the A380 since November 2009. Air France replaced two mid-sized “classic” widebody aircraft with the A380 on this route, allowing the airline to offer the same capacity with much higher economic efficiency, at significantly lower fuel consumption, and with lower emissions. The carrier also is using its A380s on flights from Paris to Tokyo and Johannesburg.
QANTAS has been operating its A380s since September 2008 from two cities in its Australian home market – Sydney and Melbourne, providing the jetliner’s first service to Los Angeles on the U.S. West Coast, along with routes to Dubai, London and Hong Kong. Lufthansa joined the ranks of A380 operators in May 2010 – deploying its growing fleet on routes between Frankfurt and Beijing, Houston, Johannesburg, San Francisco, Singapore and Tokyo.
Korean Air, which has a long-standing relationship with Airbus that dates back to 1974, received its first A380 in May 2011 and has ordered a total of 10 aircraft to help expand its global route network. As Airbus’ sixth international operator, Korean Air flies the A380 from its Seoul hub to selected destinations in Asia, North America and Europe.
The no. 1 A380 for China Southern Airlines entered revenue service in October 2011 with round-trip flights linking Beijing and Guangzhou. After this introductory domestic service, the airline began using the A380 on international routes starting with flights between Guangzhou and Los Angeles in October 2012.
In May 2012, Malaysia Airlines became the fifth airline in the Asia-Pacific region – and the eighth worldwide – to incorporate the double-deck A380 into its fleet. Malaysia’s A380s are used in operations from Kuala Lumpur to London, Paris and Hong Kong.
Thai Airways International (THAI) became the ninth airline worldwide to incorporate the A380 into its fleet in September 2012. The carrier’s A380s – which seat 507 passengers in a premium three-class layout – provide service to Frankfurt, Tokyo and Paris after being used on Bangkok-Hong Kong and Bangkok-Singapore routes upon initial entry into service.
British Airways became the 10th airline to receive an A380 in July 2013 and inaugurated its long-haul operations with the double-deck jetliner between London and Los Angeles two months later.
In May 2014, Asiana Airlines took delivery of its first of six A380s on order, which is a key element in the South Korea-based carrier’s future vision and fleet modernisation strategy. Asiana – the 11th operator worldwide to receive Airbus’ 21st century flagship jetliner – initially will deploy its no. 1 aircraft from Seoul on regional services in Asia to Tokyo, Hong Kong and Bangkok; to be followed by long-haul routes to Los Angeles in the U.S.
Qatar Airways became the world’s 12th airline to add the A380 to its fleet during September 2014. Airbus’ 21st century flagship jetliner is taking this Gulf airline to new heights, enabling it to carry passengers even further while providing an unrivalled in-flight experience. Qatar Airways is scheduled to begin service with its initial A380 from Doha’s Hamad International Airport to London Heathrow.
Qatar will inaugurate A380 to Paris (Charles de Gaulle) on November 1 and a second flight to Heathrow on December 1.
Map of A380 operators and routes operated: CLICK HERE
Copyright Photo: Antony J. Best/AirlinersGallery.com. This historic photo shows the first, Airbus A380-861 A7-APA (msn 137), arriving at London (Heathrow) as flight QR 03 at 1225 local time. The flight back to Doha departs as flight QR 04 at 1415 each day.
Airbus (Toulouse) has unveiled the first delivery aircraft for its first A350 customer, Qatar Airways (Doha). The pictured A350-941 A7-ALA (msn 006) is now fully painted. Airbus issued this statement:
The first A350 XWB for Qatar Airways is progressing towards delivery before year end. The aircraft equipped with Rolls Royce Trent XWB engines rolled out of the Airbus factory in Toulouse fully painted, prominently bearing Qatar Airways’ livery.
Following the recent EASA Type Certification, the Qatar Airways A350-900 is now entering into its final stage of production during which Airbus and the airline teams are actively working together in order to ensure a seamless hand-over process. The remaining steps up to delivery comprise notably the cabin completion as well as ground and flight tests.
The A350 XWB is Airbus’ all-new mid-size long range product line and the newest member of Airbus’ leading widebody family. The A350 XWB stands out in its class thanks to its combination of passenger comfort, technological innovation and its unique industrial process. Built hand-in-hand with our customers, the A350 XWB sets new standards in terms of passenger experience, operational efficiency and cost-effectiveness.
At the end of September 2014, the A350 XWB had won 750 orders from 39 customers worldwide.
Copyright Photo: Airbus.
Airbus (Toulouse) has announced the new A350-900 received its Type Certification from the European Aviation Safety Agency (EASA) on September 30, 2014. The certified aircraft is powered by Rolls-Royce Trent XWB engines. Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) certification will follow shortly.
The EASA A350-900 Type Certificate was signed by EASA’s Executive Director, Patrick Ky. The document was handed over to Airbus’ Executive Vice President Engineering, Charles Champion and Airbus’ A350 XWB Chief Engineer, Gordon McConnell.
Qatar Airways will take delivery of the first A350 before the end of the year. Our fleet of five test aircraft (above) completed the certification campaign, on time, cost and quality with more than 2,600 flight test hour
At the end of May 2014, the A350 XWB had received 750 orders from 39 customers worldwide.
All images by Airbus.
Qatar Airways (Doha) has taken delivery of the pictured Airbus A380-861 A7-APA (msn 137) today (September 17), its first Airbus A380. Airbus issued this statement:
At a ceremony in Hamburg hosted by Airbus, Qatar Airways, one of the world’s fastest growing airlines welcomed a new star to its fleet – the Airbus A380. In the presence of His Excellency Akbar Al Baker, Qatar Airways Group Chief Executive, and Fabrice Brégier, Airbus President and CEO, the airline took delivery of the first of its 10 Airbus A380 aircraft on order.
The delivery marks the beginning of a new chapter for Qatar Airways, as it pushes boundaries and expands its operations. The A380, with its unique combination of increased capacity, long-haul range and unbeatable fuel efficiency, will enable the airline to carry its passengers even further and at deluxe comfort standards.
As a five-star performer, the A380 has become a firm favourite with passengers and airlines, due to the smoothness of the flight, quietness of the cabin and the spaciousness of the overall aircraft layout. These unique characteristics allow Qatar Airways to achieve their ambition of providing excellent services to their passengers. The A380’s built-in cabin flexibility has also given Qatar Airways the opportunity to make innovative use of the aircraft’s space, offering the airline’s passengers an exceptional in-flight experience.
All seats are equipped with the latest entertainment systems, and the stylish and comfortable interior for Qatar Airways’ A380 will accommodate a total of 517 people – 461 in Economy, 48 in Business and eight in First Class, featuring the widest first-class seats in the industry. The aircraft has two full-length passenger decks – First and Business Class cabins will both be located on the aircraft’s upper deck, along with a special lounge area for premium passengers.
Qatar Airways is the 12th world class carrier to fly the A380. The airline’s first A380 will make its debut on the popular London Heathrow route, from Hamad International in Doha, followed by Paris Charles de Gaulle.
With 318 orders so far by 19 customers the A380 captures 90 percent of the Very Large Aircraft market. With the delivery today, the global A380 fleet mounts up to 142 aircraft, having accumulated over 1.5 million flight hours on some 180,000 commercial flights. To date over 65 million passengers have already enjoyed the unique experience of flying on board an A380. Every four minutes, an A380 either takes off or lands at one of the 41 airports where it operates today and the network is constantly growing.
Copyright Photo: Airbus. Handing over Qatar Airways’ new A380 flagship: Airbus President and CEO Fabrice Brégier (right) and His Excellency, Mr. Akbar Al Baker, Group Chief Executive Qatar Airways.
Qatar Airways (Doha) and Airbus (Toulouse) have resolved a three-month dispute that was blocking the delivery of the first Airbus A380 according to this report by Reuters. As we had reported, Qatar had previously declined to take delivery of the pictured Airbus A380-861 A7-APA due to concerns about the quality of the cabin interior. Qatar has 10 A380s on order.
Read the full report: CLICK HERE
Qatar Airways has been delaying the inaugural flight from Doha to London (Heathrow). According to Airline Route the latest inaugural date is October 10 for this route. Doha-Paris (CDG) remains on target for October 16 so the airline is bound to take two aircraft at first on delivery.
Top Copyright Photo: Gerd Beilfuss/AirlinersGallery.com. Airbus A380-861 A7-APA (msn 137) awaits the official handover date.
Above Copyright Photo: Qatar Airways. The First Class section of the Airbus A380.
Video: Qatar Airways unveiled its Airbus A380 product in March 2014:
Qatar Airways Cargo (Qatar Airways) (Doha) is set to continue its expansion with the launch of two new freighter destinations, Brussels in Belgium and Shanghai in China.
Brussels will be served four times weekly by the Airbus A330F freighter, effective on October 1. The freighter will fly via Entebbe to Brussels on Wednesdays and Sundays and via Nairobi to Brussels on Mondays and Fridays.
A three-times weekly nonstop Boeing 777 freighter service will operate on the Doha-Shanghai-Doha route, effective October 2.
In addition, with effect from October 1, an additional Boeing 777 freighter frequency will be added on the Doha – Hong Kong route, bringing up the weekly frequencies to 14.
Qatar Airways Cargo completed the transition from a manually handled cargo environment to a fully automated cargo terminal at Hamad International Airport when it moved to the new state-of-the-art facility. The brand new cargo terminal at Hamad International Airport offers the very latest technology and five-star service to customers around the globe.
Previously Qatar Airways signed a Letter of Intent for four additional Boeing 777Fs.
Copyright Photo: Nick Dean/AirlinersGallery.com. Boeing 777-FDZ A7-BFE (msn 39644) taxies at Paine Field near Everett.
Qatar Airways (Doha) has announced that commencing on November 3, the airline will operate a new nonstop five-times-weekly service between Doha and Cape Town, South Africa.
Cape Town, which is currently served three-times-a-week via Johannesburg, is one of the airline’s most popular African destinations. Now, thanks to continuous growth of the airline’s fleet and increasing passenger demand to the South African city, the airline is offering nonstop services to Cape Town for the first time.
The route will be operated by Qatar Airways’ Boeing 787 Dreamliner aircraft which features 22 seats in Business Class and 232 seats in Economy Class, with the latest interactive inflight entertainment system featuring over 1000 options available in all cabin classes.
In other news, Qatar Airways introduced its Boeing 787 Dreamliner aircraft on the Vienna route on September 1, 2014.
Qatar Airways is the first airline to commence scheduled 787 Dreamliner service to Vienna.
Finally, Qatar Airways on October 26 is introducing Doha-Phuket nonstop flights, replacing a one stop service via Kuala Lumpur. Airbus A330-200 aircraft will operate daily on this new route.
Copyright Photo: Tony Storck/AirlinersGallery.com. Boeing 787-8 A7-BCK (msn 38329) prepares to land at London (Heathrow).
Qatar Airways Aircraft Slide Show: CLICK HERE
Qatar Airways (Doha), which will receive its first A350 XWB before the end of 2014, has ordered 80 of the wide body jetliner. The first delivery aircraft has now been painted at Toulouse.
Copyright Photos: Airbus. The first Qatar A350 is the pictured A350-941 registered as A7-ALA (msn 006).
Guest Editor Aaron Newman
Power Shift; Gulf Carriers Threat to Alliance Airlines
By Aaron Newman
There are not many days that go by without seeing news come from the Middle East’s emergent airlines. Emirates Airline (Dubai), Etihad Airways (Abu Dhabi) and Qatar Airways (Doha) have been populating the headlines with large aircraft orders, launching new routes, new state-of-the art airports, and lavish onboard improvements. These three airlines have made established legacy carriers across the globe uneasy as they present a real threat to the established airlines bottom line. Alliance airlines like British Airways, KLM-Air France, Lufthansa, American and United have long dominated trans-oceanic high-yielding business markets. Are these industry mainstays slowly losing their grip?
Rapid economic development of Persian Gulf countries in the 1970’s and 80’s were due largely in part of the discovery of vast oil and gas reserves and the growth of OPEC. This caused large amounts of capital to flow into these small Gulf nations. Over time, small oil nations began looking for ways to diversify their country’s portfolio in a fear that oil reserves will eventually run out. These three state owned airlines are now an integral part of their countries respective economies. Qatar Airways for example, claims to count for 11% of the state’s GDP. Supported by friendly regulatory environments, government spending on airport infrastructures, and new, reliable long-haul aircraft, these carriers have transitioned from small regional airlines to global mainstays in a decade’s time.
Keys to Success
Access to cheap capital; the Gulf States have access to large cash reserves from oil and gas resources. This enables Persian Gulf nations to finance rapid growth, and offers support with airport development and infrastructure.
Regional competition; the Gulf airlines cooperate on many issues but also vigorously compete with each other, creating the need for efficient operations and continual product development to attract new customers.
Geography; the Middle East is ideally placed to link major global population centers. It sits at a cross-road between Europe, Africa and Asia.
Emerging market demand; demand from emerging markets is rising fast as a rapidly growing middle class has the time and money to consider travelling by air for leisure and business. The Gulf is located between the mature economies of Europe and the emerging markets of South East Asia, India, China and Africa.
A New Formidable Opponent
The Gulf airlines have combined home markets of only 7.5 million people, and so must rely on connecting passengers with a hub and spoke system. European airlines have been particularly hard hit by this, watching their natural customers travel on Gulf carriers instead of the country’s national carrier. Christoph Franz, former CEO of Lufthansa Group, highlights the challenging future of his prior company on a new Emirates route from Lisbon to Dubai saying , “we are talking about passengers who until now were primarily attracted by flights from Lisbon to Munich, in order to go on to Asian destinations. At least part of them are not flying via Germany anymore,” he says. “In the beginning we were talking about a competitive threat on paper – now we are talking about reality in our markets” (ft.com).
Copyright Photo: Keith Burton/AirlinersGallery.com. Etihad Airways Airbus A340-642 A6-EHF (msn 837) departs from London’s Heathrow Airport.
In a June warning to its investors, Lufthansa cautioned the possibility of downward revisions to the airlines earnings outlook. Chief Financial Officer Simone Menne cited pricing pressure from the Gulf carriers’ expansion into Europe as a major contributing factor. Gulf airlines, which are adding capacity in major European cities such as Paris and London, are also ramping up service in secondary cities like Barcelona and Hamburg. This means that they’re grabbing market share from the European carriers not only at their hubs, but also at their spokes.
The Gulf three now send nearly 120 large, new planes weekly to a growing number of American cities (WSJ.com). Though the United States and Canada are geographically better positioned than their European counterparts, the Gulf carriers still pose a credible threat. Airlines and governments in North America have been fighting back where they can. In Canada, the government has limited the number of planes that Etihad, Emirates and Qatar can land at its airports–a move to protect Air Canada, and its partner Lufthansa.
Graph Source: Emirates.
“Essentially, these are not airlines—they’re governments,” said Delta CEO Richard Anderson. “They have the ability to gain advantages in markets because profitability doesn’t matter.” He said the U.S. government should revisit its air treaties with other nations to ensure there is “equity” in commerce (wsj.com). Many industry analysts say U.S. opposition has slight chance of slowing down the Gulf carriers in the deregulated era. Washington is unlikely to alienate its Mideast allies, and Boeing, the U.S.’s biggest exporter, gets 10 percent of its wide-body orders from the Gulf carriers.
Looking Into the Future
With a backlog of more than 500 wide body aircraft orders, do not expect these airlines growth to subside. According to a recent report by Credit Suisse, Etihad Airways, Emirates, and Qatar Airways will increase the number of seats offered on their Europe-to-Asia flights between 8 and 18 percent a year between now and 2020 (thefinancialist.com). I believe you will continue to see these airlines enter more secondary markets to grab market share from legacy carriers. I envision cities like Chengdu, Sapporo, Brasilia, and Charlotte N.C. as cities that Gulf carriers will have their eyes on for future growth. With new airports and new aircraft, growth is inevitable; at this point it is not a matter of if Gulf carriers will continue to grow, but it appears to be a matter of when and where.
What can European, Southeast Asian and North American airlines do in response to the new threat to their long-haul business? Airlines must first cut costs. This is critical, particularly for European airlines to remain competitive. For example, Lufthansa needs to reduce costs on flights to Southeast Asia by 40 percent to stay competitive. Another example, according to Credit Suisse, Air France and IAG (British Airways Parent Company) has 30 percent higher unit costs on flights to Southeast Asia than some Asian competitors, Turkish Airlines, and Emirates (thefinancialist.com). Secondly, airlines could reduce route competition and shelter revenue by developing mutual partnerships with the Gulf carriers. These relationships would make it easier for both Eurasian and North American carriers to get more customers into the Middle East, India and developing nations in Africa with little investment required. As the saying goes; if you can’t beat em,’ join em.’
Bottom Copyright Photo: Stefan Sjogren/AirlinersGallery.com. Airbus A380-861 A6-EDJ (msn 009) of Emirates arrives at London (Heathrow).
Boeing (Chicago and Seattle) and Qatar Airways (Doha) have finalized an order for 50 777-9Xs, valued at $18.9 billion at current list prices. The 777X order, first announced as a commitment at the 2013 Dubai Airshow, was part of the largest product launch in commercial jetliner history.
In addition, the airline announced a commitment for 50 additional 777-9X purchase rights. If exercised, that would take Qatar’s 777X order tally to 100 airplanes valued at $37.7 billion at list prices.
Qatar Airways also announced their intent to order four 777 Freighters and options for four more, with a combined value of $2.4 billion at list prices.
The 777X will introduce the latest technologies including the most advanced commercial engine ever – the GE9X by GE Aviation – and an all-new high efficiency composite wing that has a longer span than today’s 777. The 777X family includes the 777-8X and the 777-9X, both designed to respond to market needs and customer preferences.
The 777-9X will be 12 percent more fuel efficient than any competing airplane, necessary in today’s competitive environment. The 777-8X is 5 percent more efficient than its competitor at all ranges while providing for new network opportunities. Design of the 777X is underway and production is set to begin in 2017, with first delivery targeted for 2020. To date, the 777X has accumulated 300 orders and commitments from six customers worldwide.
Qatar Airways (Doha) as planned, yesterday (July 1) commenced daily, nonstop services between Dallas/Fort Worth International Airport and the newly unveiled Hamad International Airport (HIA) in Doha, Qatar. The new route increases Qatar Airways’ extensive global network to seven gateways within the United States and 144 destinations worldwide.
Dallas/Fort Worth becomes Qatar Airways second destination in Texas, representing the airline’s enduring commitment to the region. Along with Houston, Dallas/Fort Worth will serve as a crucial junction between Qatar Airways’ global network, via Doha, and other key destinations across the Southwestern USA, including Austin, San Antonio and Oklahoma City, through our oneworld alliance partners.
The new route flies daily between Dallas/Fort Worth and Doha, departing from Doha at 8:10 am (0810) and arriving into Dallas/Fort Worth at 3:35 pm (1535) the same day. Overnight service to Doha departs Dallas/Fort Worth at 8:00 pm (2000) and lands in Doha at 6:20 pm (1820) the following day. The route is operated with a Boeing 777-200 LR configured with 217 Economy Class seats and 42 Business Class seats.
Outbound passengers to Doha will enjoy fast, convenient connections to key destinations throughout the world, including Delhi, Beijing, Tokyo, Bangkok and Perth, via the world’s newest international hub, Hamad International Airport.
Officially commencing full operations on May 1, Hamad International Airport offers state-of-the-art facilities and is capable of handling over 360,000 flights and 30 million passengers annually, with a fluid capacity of 50 million passengers after full completion.
As one of the fastest growing airlines in the world, Dallas/Fort Worth represents Qatar Airways’ tenth new destination of 2014. The airline operates one of the youngest fleets in the sky and will be adding the highly anticipated Airbus A380s and A350s in the near future.
Copyright Photo: PRNewsFoto/Qatar Airways. The traditional water cannon salute was performed on the first arriving flight at DFW.
Emirates (Dubai) has selected Doha, the home of Qatar Airways, to become Emirates’ most served destination with seven daily flights going to the Qatari capital from December 1.
Doha will take the top spot when it goes from six to seven daily flights, overtaking Bangkok’s six daily services.
The extra flights into Doha are part of a 28 flight boost to the airline’s Middle East services.
Muscat will go from two to three flights a day, Bahrain from three to four daily services and Kuwait will increase from five to six flights daily.
With the changes in place as of December 1, Emirates will offer 276 weekly flights to destinations across the Middle East out of its industry-leading hub at Dubai International.
Copyright Photo: Paul Denton/AirlinersGallery.com. Emirates uses Boeing 777s on the relatively short route. Boeing 777-31H ER A6-EBD (msn 33501) arrives back at Dubai International Airport (DXB) hub.
Qatar Airways to start a new route to Tokyo Haneda tomorrow, Airbus A380 to be introduced now to London Heathrow on August 1
Qatar Airways (Doha) is set to continue its expansion into the Far East tomorrow (June 18) when it launches its newest destination, Tokyo Haneda International Airport. The addition of its newest destination will double the airline’s service to the city of Tokyo with up to two flights a day. The route, which will be operated by a Boeing 787 Dreamliner, will be Qatar Airways’ third into Japan, joining Osaka and Tokyo’s Narita International Airport.
With the commencement of flights to Tokyo Haneda, the number of flights to Japan rises from 14 to 21 frequencies each week.
In other news, Qatar Airways is now planning to introduce the new Airbus A380 on August 1 to London (Heathrow) and Paris (CDG) on August 15 according to Airline Route.
Copyright Photo: Gerd Beilfuss/AirlinersGallery.com. Airbus A380-861 F-WWST (msn 137) has now become A7-APA for its handover.
Qatar Airways‘ (Doha) inaugural flight to Miami International Airport (MIA) touched down yesterday afternoon (June 10), commencing service to the airline’s sixth US gateway.
The service marked its 142nd destination worldwide from the central hub in Doha, Qatar.
With this new route, Qatar Airways is the only airline to offer nonstop service between the Middle East and Miami, Florida.
The launch continues a major expansion by the airline into the United States. Nonstop service to Philadelphia International Airport began in April, and the airline will commence flights to Dallas/Fort Worth International Airport in July.
With Doha’s centralized location, travelers from Miami can reach cities such as Bangkok, Nairobi, Colombo, and Mumbai in an impressive 23 hours or less through a quick transfer in Doha.
The airline recently moved its entire operations to the State of Qatar’s new airport – Hamad International, 60 percent of which is built on reclaimed land.
Qatar Airways’ Doha to Miami route is being operated with a Boeing 777-200 in a two-class configuration of 42 seats in Business and 217 seats in Economy. The aircraft offers seatback TV screens providing passengers with the next generation interactive onboard entertainment system and a choice of more than 1,000 audio and video options.
Qatar Airways has seen rapid growth in just 17 years of operations and is currently flying a modern fleet of 134 aircraft to more than 140 key business and leisure destinations across Europe, the Middle East, Africa, Asia Pacific and the Americas.
Miami joins the airline’s existing Americas destinations: Chicago, Houston, New York, Philadelphia, Washington, D.C., Montreal, Sao Paulo and Buenos Aires. Qatar Airways is set to launch services to a diverse portfolio of new routes during the coming months, including Tokyo Haneda, Japan (June 18), Dallas/Fort Worth, USA (July 1) and Djibouti (July 27).
Copyright Photo: Qatar Airways.
Qatar Airways (Doha) has announced that commencing on October 1, 2014, the airline will offer nonstop flights from Doha to Zagreb three times weekly. The new direct flights will provide a more convenient alternative to the current daily flights to Zagreb which fly via Budapest before moving onwards to the Croatian capital.
From October 1, passengers will be able to fly daily directly to Budapest, four times a week to Zagreb via Budapest on a linked flight, and three times a week directly to Zagreb on the delinked flight.
The new route schedule will increase seats to 240 Business Class and 2,640 Economy Class per week, an increase of 72 and 384 seats respectively. The airline will continue to fly the Airbus A320 aircraft direct to and from Zagreb. With its two-cabin configuration, comprising of 12 seats in Business Class and 132 Economy Class seats
In other news, Qatar Airways has delayed its planned Airbus A380 inaugural service on the Doha – London (Heathrow) route to July 1 instead of June 17 according to Airline Route.
Copyright Photo: Paul Denton/AirlinersGallery.com. Airbus A320-232 A7-AHY (msn 5395) with Sharklets prepares to land in Geneva.
Qatar Airways (Doha) today (May 27) commenced full operations at its new state-of-the-art hub, Hamad International Airport (HIA), at 09:00 local time.
With the first Qatar Airways commercial flight QR 1113 from Bahrain landing at HIA at 09:10 local time, all operations for all airlines have now been transferred to HIA. The new airport adjacent to the old Doha International Airport.
Above: The first commercial flight of Qatar Airways touching down at Hamad International Airport, marking the commencing of full operations of the national airline at Doha’s new airport.
Above: His Excellency Mr. Akbar Al Baker, Chief Executive Officer of Qatar Airways during his meeting with the local media at Hamad International Airport.
“The moment we have all been building towards for many years arrived today as QR 1113 touched down, marking the historic start of our full operations at the world-class Hamad International Airport,” said Qatar Airways Chief Executive Officer, His Excellency Mr. Akbar Al Baker. “This is yet another milestone in the rich history of Qatar Airways, and one that will allow us to fully realise our ambitions, and to offer our passengers the very best of services, both in the air and on the ground.
“Qatar Airways will be able to offer an exceptional passenger experience, as HIA has been designed with passengers foremost in mind. The airport will also be able to accommodate the world’s largest aircraft, such as our much-anticipated Qatar Airways Airbus A380 which will commence operations to the UK in June and France in July.”
Passengers travelling on today’s historic day were greeted with roses, dates, coffee, chocolate and Qatari flags. They were also able to take advantage of the many new services available at Hamad International Airport, from the free Wi-Fi to play areas for children, multiple quiet areas to relax, and the amazing array of shopping and eating options. With more than 70 retail outlets offering an unprecedented selection of designer labels, high street fashion, electronics, gourmet foods and much more, Qatar Duty Free at HIA also has more than 30 cafes and restaurants with a sumptuous selection of global and local cuisine.
All passengers travelling via HIA are advised to arrive three hours before their flight, with check-in closing one hour before departure for Economy Class, and 45 minutes before departure for First and Business Class. e-Gates are already operational in both the departures and arrivals areas, offering holders of an e-Gate Card a swift journey through the new airport. Helpful HIA staff will also be readily available to assist at information desks and throughout the airport.
Google Maps. The new airport is located on the East coast of the peninsula, just 16 km from the center of Doha and 4 km from DIA. Due to an elaborate newly-built road infrastructure surrounding HIA, arrival time to the airport is around 25 minutes, depending on traffic. Qatar Airways’ passengers can travel to HIA via car, bus, taxi or limo services.
Top Copyright Photo: Hamad International Airport. An aerial view of the new airport with the main terminal at the top center right. Downtown Doha is to the left in the upper-center center in the background. The new Emiri Terminal is located closest in the center-right area. Below: An interior photo of the main terminal (all other photos by Qatar Airways).
Qatar Airways (Doha) has announced its second Airbus A380 aircraft will commence operations on the route to Paris (Charles De Gaulle) from Doha’s new hub, Hamad International Airport.
Qatar Airways recently announced that the first of its 13 Airbus A380 aircraft on order will commence operations on the QR 003 and QR 004 flights on the route to London-Heathrow and return starting on June 17. Following this, the airline has now confirmed that its second A380 will be used to fly to Paris Charles De Gaulle Airport from Doha from July 3, on flights QR 39 and QR 40.
Featuring a tri-class configuration of seating in First, Business and Economy Class, over two decks, the A380 is the largest passenger jet in the world and will provide a superior traveller experience to the Qatar Airways’ customers.
The new First Class A380 seat, recently revealed at the world’s leading travel show, ITB Berlin, features a 90-inch seat pitch, transforming into a fully flat bed, together with an expansive choice of entertainment options displayed on individual 26-inch television screens.
Hamad International Airport (HIA), Qatar Airways new home as of May 27, has been designed to specifically cater to the A380 aircraft, with six contact gates designed especially for the super jumbo. In addition, the maintenance hangar at HIA – which is the largest in the world – is able to accommodate two A380s simultaneously.
Qatar Airways is also celebrating a year of intensive fleet growth and recently becoming a member of the oneworld global alliance network. In addition to the 13 A380 aircraft the airline currently has on order, Qatar Airways is also set this year to welcome the first of 80 Airbus A350 aircraft, the world’s newest aircraft, as Airbus’ launch customer. This forms part of Qatar Airways plans to significantly expand its fleet with 300 additional aircraft, worth more than $50 billion (US), on order, including the Boeing 787 and 777X.
Qatar Airways has seen rapid growth in just 17 years of operation, to the point where today it is flying a modern fleet of 134 aircraft to 139 key business and leisure destinations across Europe, the Middle East, Africa, Asia Pacific, North America and South America.
Over the next few months, the network will grow further with new routes to Istanbul Sabiha Gökçen Airport, Turkey (May 22, 2014), Edinburgh, Scotland (May 28, 2014), Miami, USA (June 10, 2014), Tokyo Haneda, Japan (June 18, 2014), Dallas/Fort Worth, USA (July 1, 2014) and Djibouti (July 27, 2014).
Top Copyright Photo: Gerd Beilfuss/AirlinersGallery.com. The first A380, the pictured A380-861 F-WWST (msn 137) will become A7-APA on delivery.
Bottom Copyright Photo: Qatar Airways.
Qatar’s new Hamad International Airport (HIA) (Doha) extended its jetways today to welcome arriving passengers for the first time to the world’s newest aviation hub. A press conference was held earlier today at the HIA passenger terminal to mark the soft launch of the airport. The event was attended by HE Mr. Jassim Saif Ahmed Al Sulaiti, Minister of Transport, members of the New Doha International Airport (NDIA) Steering Committee, guests and members of the press.
A Qatar Airways flight was the first to officially land on the East Runway. The flight carried the Minister of Transport, the board members of the Steering Committee of NDIA and other delegates and received a Water Salute by the Qatar Civil Aviation Authority Rescue Fire Fighting Services.
Starting today (May 1), ten carriers commenced operations out of the new passenger terminal at HIA, with the remaining carriers, including national carrier Qatar Airways, expected to move to the new airport by May 27, 2014.
HIA and Airport City (together comprising the NDIA project) span 29 square kilometers, 60% on land reclaimed from the Arabian Gulf. The project includes 100 buildings of various uses. The Passenger Terminal features a massive internal area of 600,000 square meters and has 3 concourses and 33 contact gates, which will subsequently be increased to five concourses and 65 contact gates, including eight for the A380, in the final build-out.
Once fully open, the terminal also features 16 lounges, 26 art installations, more than 100 F&B and retail outlets, a transit hotel, a swimming pool, a luxury spa, squash courts and a four-storey catering facility that is one of the largest in the world. The on-site public mosque can accommodate 500 worshippers at prayer time.
“The launch of the new airport represents the fulfilment of the longstanding vision of His Highness Sheikh Hamad bin Khalifa Al Thani, the Father Emir, which was brought to fruition by His Highness Sheikh Tamim bin Hamad Al Thani, the Emir of Qatar,” said Al-Noaimi. “HIA will be a source of pride and joy for all people of Qatar for many decades to come. It will deliver a memorable experience to all passengers that will travel through its gates; an experience that reflects Qatar’s status and importance on the world travel and tourism map.”
Copyright Photo and Image: Hamad International Airport.
Map: Hamad International Airport is adjacent to the current, being phased out Doha International Airport (DOH). The new airport was built on reclaimed land.
Qatar Airways to debut its first Airbus A380 on the Doha-London Heathrow route on June 17, offers more glimpses of the interiors
Qatar Airways (Doha) has revealed an additional glimpse of its first Airbus A380-800 (above) with its First and Business Class lounge and bathroom interiors.
The onboard lounge of Qatar Airways’ A380 has been designed to ensure that every feature is the finest and most comfortable in the sky. Designed with passengers foremost in mind, the lounge offers them an ideal place to engage with a friend, sit and relax, or just move around.
The lounge also offers passengers an escape from the typical airplane environment and has been developed to make them feel like they are in their own executive club. The spaciousness of the lounge combined with the most advanced mood lighting system available helps make passengers feel refreshed when they return to their cabin for rest or work.
The First Class bathrooms have also been customised to create a spa-like warmth with contemporary clean lines and a finish that comes with the most luxurious amenities. The lavatories include features such as modern taps which are sensor operated and large square modern sinks which help to maximize space.
The airline is due to receive its first A380 (top) very soon, the first of 13 such aircraft on order and it will be deployed on one of its busiest routes, Doha – London Heathrow on June 17.
Qatar Airways is celebrating a year of exceptional fleet growth as it is also set to welcome the first of 80 Airbus A350s on order later this year, being the global launch customer of the world’s newest aircraft. Meanwhile the airline is also currently making enhancements to its select A320 and A330 fleet by upgrading its Business Class seating so that they recline into 180-degree fully lie-flat beds.
Qatar Airways has seen rapid growth in just 17 years of operations, currently flying a modern fleet of 134 aircraft to 138 key business and leisure destinations across Europe, the Middle East, Africa, Asia Pacific and the Americas.
Over the next few months, the network will grow further with Al Hofuf, Saudi Arabia (May 15), Istanbul Sabiha Gökçen Airport, Turkey (May 22, 2014), Edinburgh, Scotland (May 28, 2014), Miami, USA (June 10, 2014), Haneda, Japan (June 18, 2014), Dallas/Fort Worth, USA (July 1, 2014) and Djibouti (July 27, 2014).
In other news, Qatar Airways’ inaugural flight landed at Larnaca International Airport today (April 29), marking the five-star airline’s 138th destination from Doha.
The inaugural flight signals the start of a four-time weekly service to Larnaca that will be operated by an Airbus A320, with 12 seats in Business Class and 132 in Economy.
Top Copyright Photo: Gerd Beilfuss/AirlinersGallery.com (all others by Qatar Airways). Airbus A380-861 A7-APA (msn 137) at Hamburg (Finkenwerder) will be the first Airbus A380 to be delivered to Qatar.
Qatar Airways (Doha) today announced that from July 21, 2014, the airline will operate a new daily nonstop route from Doha to Bali.
The 10-hour routes from October will be operated with Qatar Airways’ Boeing 787 Dreamliner aircraft. Initially the Bali route will be operated with an Airbus A330.
Flying direct to and from Bali, the Dreamliner will have a two-cabin configuration, comprising of 22 seats in Business Class and 232 Economy Class seats with a high standard of comfort on board, including individual 10.5 inch television screens on all Economy Cass seats and a full complimentary food and beverage service.
Over the next few months, the network will grow further with Larnaca, Cyprus (April 29), Al Hofuf, Saudi Arabia (May 15), Istanbul Sabiha Gökçen Airport, Turkey (May 22, 2014), Edinburgh, Scotland (May 28, 2014), Miami (June 10, 2014), Tokyo Haneda (June 18, 2014) and Dallas/Fort Worth (July 1, 2014).
Daily nonstop Doha to/from Bali: (all times local)
QR 962 departs Doha (DOH) at 02:35; arrives Bali Denpesar (DPS) at 17:35
QR 963 departs Bali Denpesar (DPS) at 19:35; arrives Doha (DOH) at 23:59
Copyright Photo: Qatar Airways. Boeing 787-8 A7-BCB (msn 38320) soars beautifully.
Qatar Airways‘ (Doha) inaugural flight to Philadelphia touched down at Philadelphia International Airport (PHL) yesterday morning (April 2) marking the airline’s fifth gateway in the United States.
With the launch of the daily service between Philadelphia and Qatar Airways’ hub in Doha, capital of the State of Qatar, the city becomes destination number 137 in the airline’s expanding worldwide network.
Qatar Airways now operates 35 passenger flights a week between the United States and Doha – daily from New York, Washington DC, Chicago, Houston and Philadelphia.
Flight QR 727 arrived to a warm welcome at a grand airport ceremony attended by a number of dignitaries, including Qatar Airways Chief Executive Officer, His Excellency, Mr. Akbar Al Baker, Mayor of Philadelphia, Michael A. Nutter, and Chief Executive Officer of Philadelphia International Airport, Mark Gale.
The maiden flight carried international media and airline management, including Mr. Al Baker. The new route offers a connection between Philadelphia and a vast number of destinations across the Middle East, Africa, India and Asia Pacific via Doha, while the morning departure time from Philadelphia offers US passengers a unique opportunity to access an entirely new schedule of connecting flights out of Doha.
Mr. Al Baker and Philadelphia airport authorities delivered speeches at Philadelphia International Airport to mark the occasion, noting the economic impact of Qatar Airways’ arrival in the city. “I would like to take this special opportunity to thank the people of Philadelphia and local airport authorities for their great support in helping Qatar Airways launch passenger flights to this vibrant city,” said Mr. Al Baker.
“Today, Philadelphia joins our existing North American hubs: Chicago, New York, Washington DC, Houston and Montreal,” continued Al Baker. “But only our newest gateway offers a unique, morning route to Doha, our earliest departure from North America, and provides passengers with unprecedented access to a new schedule of convenient connections to our entire global network.”
Philadelphia is a key destination for business and leisure travelers alike. One of the world’s busiest airports, it sees 30.5 million passengers a year.
“Our 5-star service begins by forging a connection with the communities we serve and we appreciate the opportunity to work together with this great city,” added Mr. Al Baker.
Mr. Al Baker explained that Philadelphia marked yet another significant milestone for the airline, which is expanding its global network at a remarkable pace.
Qatar Airways’ Doha to Philadelphia route is being operated with a Boeing 777-200LR in a two-class configuration of 42 seats in Business and 217 seats in Economy. The aircraft offers seatback TV screens providing passengers with the next generation interactive onboard entertainment system and a choice of more than 1,000 audio and video options.
Qatar Airways has seen rapid growth in just 17 years of operations, currently flying a modern fleet of 131 aircraft to more than 130 key business and leisure destinations across Europe, the Middle East, Africa, Asia Pacific and the Americas.
Qatar Airways is set to launch services to a diverse portfolio of new routes during the coming months, including Larnaca, Cyprus (April 29), Sabiha Gokcen Airport, Turkey (May 22), Edinburgh, Scotland (May 28), Miami, USA (June 10), Haneda, Japan (June 18), Dallas/Fort Worth, USA (July 1) and Djibouti (July 27).
In other news, Qatar Airways has begun the rollout of QLOUD, an internally developed mobility application for iPads, which will provide real time and decision-relevant information to the airline’s pilots. Over 500 pilots have already embraced the new technology with 500 more set to begin using QLOUD over the next few weeks. All 2,500 Qatar Airways pilots are expected to be using the QLOUD system by September this year.
Copyright Photo: Qatar Airways. A traditional water salute welcomes Qatar Airways’ inaugural flight at the Philadelphia International Airport on Wednesday, April 2, 2014.
Qatar Airways (Doha) has announced a further expansion of its route network in Africa with Djibouti joining its ever-growing list of destinations served direct from the airline’s Doha hub.
Thrice-weekly nonstop flights will operate from Doha to Djibouti beginning on July 27, 2014.
The fast-growing airline will launch scheduled flights to Philadelphia and Larnaca in April; Edinburgh and Istanbul (Sabiha) in May; Miami and Tokyo (Haneda) in June and Dallas/Fort Worth in July.
Bordered by Ethiopia, Eritrea and Somalia, Djibouti has an economy that is largely concentrated in the service sector and the country has limited international air services – a void Qatar Airways is set to fill with its huge international network of routes via its Doha hub.
The Doha – Djibouti route will be served with an Airbus A320 featuring up to 12 seats in Business Class and up to 132 seats in Economy.
Copyright Photo: Paul Denton/AirlinersGallery.com. Airbus A320-232 A7-AHG (msn 4615) taxies at Geneva.
Qatar Airways (Doha) will take delivery of its first Airbus A380 aircraft in June and will inaugurate A380 luxury flights with a daily flight to London (Heathrow). The airline has 13 on order. The first Airbus A380-861 will be registered A7-APA (msn 137) and is already painted pending delivery.
Qatar Airways is also the launch customer for the new Airbus A350, with 80 A350s on order. The first will be delivered in the fourth quarter of this year and will reportedly be assigned to the New York (JFK) route (not yet conformed by the airline).
Qatar says it has a total of 300 Airbus and Boeing jets on order, including options.
The fast-growing airline issued this statement and photos today:
At a press conference this morning (March 5), on the first day of ITB Berlin, Qatar Airways CEO His Excellency Mr. Akbar Al Baker together with the airline’s new Country Manager for Germany and Austria, Günter Saurwein, made a series of announcements regarding the airline’s highly anticipated first Airbus A380-800, with the first display of the new luxury First Class seats (above) that will form part of the aircraft’s tri-class configuration.
With a customized interior meeting the high demand specifications of Qatar Airways, the airline´s new A380s will undoubtedly be the talk of aviation enthusiasts and passengers alike when the first aircraft enters service this year, the first of 13 such aircraft on order.
The new First Class A380 seat, revealed by Mr. Al Baker at a ceremony attended by the Mayor of Berlin, Mr Klaus Wowereit as Guest of Honour, features a 90-inch seat pitch, transforming into a fully flat bed, together with an expansive choice of entertainment options displayed on individual 19-inch television screens.
Mr. Akbar Al Baker said: “It is a landmark moment to see this fantastic new First Class A380 seat displayed here at ITB Berlin, the perfect event at which to announce such important innovations to our global audience. Operating on the Doha to London Heathrow route, this cabin will offer a new level of comfort for passengers travelling to the United Kingdom, who will also benefit from our Premium Terminal in Doha and the new Qatar Airways Premium Lounge in London Heathrow Terminal 4.
The arrival this year of the airline´s first A380 marks a significant milestone for the airline, whose future home, Hamad International Airport (HIA), has been specially designed to cater to the aircraft, with six contact gates designed with specifications required for the super jumbo. In addition, the maintenance hangar at HIA – which will be the largest in the world – is able to accommodate two A380s simultaneously.
Qatar Airways is also celebrating a year of intensive fleet growth and recently becoming a member of the oneworld global alliance network, as well as exclusive codeshare partnerships with British Airways, Cathay Pacific and American Airlines, offering customers seamless journeys.
In addition to the 13 A380 aircraft the airline currently has on order, Qatar Airways is also set this year to welcome the first of 80 A350 aircraft, the world’s newest aircraft, as Airbus’s launch customer. This forms part of Qatar Airways plans to significantly expand its fleet with 300 additional aircraft, worth more than US $50 billion, on order, including the Boeing 787 and 777X.
Qatar Airways CEO His Excellency Mr. Akbar Al Baker continued: “The last 12 months have been witness to huge strides taken forward by Qatar Airways in our desire to be the world’s leading airline, flying the youngest and most modern fleet. Most notably, we became the only airline in the Gulf to join the prestigious oneworld global alliance and I am thrilled for what this means not just for us as an airline, but for our passengers as well.”
Qatar Airways has seen rapid growth in just 17 years of operation, to the point where today it is flying a modern fleet of 129 aircraft to 136 key business and leisure destinations across Europe, the Middle East, Africa, Asia Pacific, North America and South America.
As part of its aggressive expansion program, Qatar Airways will launch routes to a further six new destinations during 2014: Philadelphia (USA) from April 2; Larnaca (Cyprus) from April 29; Istanbul Sabiha Gokcen Airport (Turkey) from May 22; Edinburgh (Scotland) from May 28; Miami (USA) from June 10 and Dallas/Fort Worth (USA) from July 1.
Qatar Airways (Doha) has announced the launch of a new daily all premium Business Class service from its hub in Doha to London’s Heathrow Airport.
The new service will be the first of its kind in the Middle East, commencing from May 15, 2014, with an Airbus A319 aircraft fitted with an all Business Class, single aisle, 2–2 seating configuration offering 40 seats.
Qatar Airways currently operates five daily flights to London Heathrow and the additional sixth all Business Class daily service marks the start of an exciting new era for travelers to and from the UK, who can experience complete comfort and privacy with the airline’s award-winning five-star hospitality.
The new additional flight will step up the frequency on the Doha – London Heathrow route from 35 to 42 weekly services.
Qatar Airways has been awarded the World’s Best Business Class Airline for 2013 and has also twice been the recipient of the Airline of the Year Award in 2011 and 2012 at the prestigious Skytrax Airline Awards. The airline has also been named as ‘Best Long-Haul Airline’ for the second year running and ‘Business Airline of the Year’ at the high profile UK Business Travel Awards 2014 recently held in London.
Qatar Airways’ new A319 Business Class seat will have one of the highest specifications for business class travel of any airline with wide seats that recline into fully flat beds and state of the art Oryx entertainment system (with more than 900 entertainment options – movies, television, video games and music).
Passengers can also remain in touch with their friends and loved ones on the ground through the SMS mobile texting GSM and GPRS service upon this aircraft, which is sure to reflect that of a VIP jet experience for those traveling between London and Doha.
Currently undergoing rapid expansion, Qatar Airways is one of the fastest growing airlines operating one of the youngest fleets in the world. Now in its 17th year of operations, Qatar Airways has a modern fleet of 129 aircraft flying to 134 key business and leisure destinations across six continents.
Qatar Airways’ first venture into the all Business Class premium market will strengthen its position as one of the leading airlines in the global aviation industry.
As part of its aggressive expansion program, Qatar Airways will launch routes to eight new destinations during 2014: Sharjah (UAE) from March 1; Dubai World Central (UAE) from March 1; Philadelphia (USA) from April 2; Larnaca (Cyprus) from April 29; Istanbul Sabiha Gokcen Airport (Turkey) from May 22; Edinburgh (Scotland) from May 28; Miami (USA) from June 10 and Dallas/Fort Worth (USA) from July 1.
The Doha – London Heathrow New Daily A319 All Business Class Flight Schedule (all times local)
Depart Doha QR015 at 14:50 hrs, arrives in London Heathrow 20:25 hrs
Depart London Heathrow QR016 at 21:55 hrs, arrives in Doha 06:40 hrs
Top Copyright Photo: Andi Hiltl/AirlinersGallery.com. All others by Qatar Airways. Operated as an ACJ, Airbus A319-133 A7-CJA (man 1656) arrives in Zurich.
Qatar Airways (Doha) and F.C. Barcelona (Barcelona) have jointly introduced a newly repainted Boeing 777-300 ER in the colors of the well-known football (soccer) club.
Qatar Airways and F.C. Barcelona issued this statement on February 20, 2014:
Qatar Airways and F.C. Barcelona are taking their partnership to the skies as the airline introduces F.C. Barcelona’s livery for the first time on a Boeing 777. The aircraft, which features the distinctive Barça scarlet and blue, or ‘Blaugrana’ as it is known in Catalan, arrived at Doha International Airport from Bangkok this week.
Building on the concept of ‘a team that unites the world’, which was first introduced in the popular TV spot created to support the partnership, the design incorporates the colorful Barça flag draped across the fuselage of a Boeing 777.
The aircraft was sent to Dublin, Ireland, where it took a team one week to hand paint the custom-made design onto the aircraft. Using an airbrush the team produced a shading effect to help create the illusion of the Barça flag moving as the aircraft takes to the skies. Additional stenciling was used for the text as well as the football club’s crest which sits on the fuselage of the aircraft.
Qatar Airways first revealed renderings of this aircraft’s tailor-made design at a press conference in Barcelona last March.
The introduction of the F.C. Barcelona livery, alongside the Qatar Airways Oryx logo, further cements the airline’s commitment to the partnership, as well as their loyalty as Barça fans. Qatar Airways and F.C. Barcelona have been fostering a successful partnership since it officially commenced in July 2013.
“Our commitment to Barca goes beyond having our name on the team jerseys. We are truly fans of the team and genuinely believe that together we are ‘a team that unites the world’,” said Qatar Airways Chief Executive Officer Akbar Al Baker. “We are very proud to showcase the FCB livery alongside the Qatar Airways Oryx on our aircraft. It is just one more way that we are able to demonstrate the strong partnership between our two organizations.”
In the nearly eight months since the partnership has been in effect, the airline has launched a hugely successful partnership campaign including the Land of FCB TV commercial that has garnered more than eight million views from fans all over the world; officially sponsored the FC Barcelona Asia Tour, and introduced unique tour and match packages for fans looking to visit Barcelona through Qatar Airways Holidays division.
Copyright Photo: Qatar Airways. Boeing 777-3DZ ER A7-BAE (msn 36104) is the aircraft selected for this new special color scheme.
Video “Around the World” TV commercial (in Italian):
Airbus (Toulouse) has brought one of its new Airbus A350 to Doha’s new Hamad International Airport in Doha on its way to the Singapore Airshow. Airbus issued this stated:
An A350 XWB flight test aircraft (msn 3) has made its premiere appearance at Doha’s new Hamad International Airport, on its way to the Singapore Airshow. The visit is part of the Entry-into-Service preparations between Airbus and Qatar Airways, the A350 XWB launch customer, who will take delivery of its first A350 XWB in the fourth quarter of this year.
During the visit, the aircraft was welcomed by Qatar Airways CEO Akbar Al Baker as well as government officials, eager to see the aircraft performing in Qatar’s skies.
The A350 XWB (Xtra Wide-Body) is an all-new mid-size long range product line comprising three versions. The new Family, whose fuselage cross-section is optimized for full long-range passenger comfort in all classes, will bring a 25 percent step change in efficiency compared with existing aircraft in this size category. To date, the A350 XWB has won 812 orders from 39 customers worldwide.
Copyright Photo: Airbus.
Qatar Airways’ (Doha) CEO, Akbar Al Baker, visited Airbus’ facilities in Toulouse to get first-hand information on the A350 program’s progress. The airline will be the first A350 XWB operator and is also its biggest customer with 80 aircraft on order. Airbus and Qatar Airways are working closely together to ensure a successful entry-into-service of this all-new aircraft from day one.
During his site-tour, Mr Al Baker unveiled Airbus’ newest flight test aircraft msn 4, branded with a special “launch customer” livery. The aircraft will soon join the A350 flight test fleet for external noise and lightning tests, avionics development & certification and training for first customer pilots & maintenance teams.
“I am pleased with what I have seen during my visit. It gives me every confidence that the program is well on track for our first delivery in 2014. At Qatar Airways, we are eager to open a new chapter of efficient and comfortable air travel and the A350 XWB will do this for us. The aircraft will give us that extra edge in economics and comfort to further boost our route expansion.” commented Akbar Al Baker.
Copyright Photos: Airbus.
British Airways to return three GSS Boeing 747-8 freighters to Atlas Air Worldwide Holdings in April
Atlas Air Worldwide Holdings, Inc. (Atlas Air) (New York) has announced it intends to pursue new ACMI (aircraft, crew, maintenance and insurance) placement opportunities for three 747-8 Freighter aircraft currently operated for British Airways plc by Atlas Air Worldwide’s 49%-owned UK subsidiary, Global Supply Systems Limited (GSS).
The action follows notice from British Airways, a unit of International Consolidated Airlines Group, S.A., regarding British Airways’ strategic decision to exit dedicated cargo-freighter service and to return the aircraft to GSS in April 2014 pursuant to the terms of the existing ACMI agreement between the parties.
Effective with the termination of the agreement, the three 747-8Fs will be redelivered to the company by GSS. Through GSS, the company also will receive contractual early termination fees from British Airways.
Meanwhile Qatar Airways (Doha) will operate five Boeing 777F freighter flights between Hong Kong and London for IAG Cargo (British Airways) starting on May 1. IAG Cargo issued this statement:
IAG Cargo has announced it has signed a long-term commercial agreement with Qatar Airways to purchase capacity on Qatar Airways-operated air cargo freighters, effective from May 1, 2014.
Qatar Airways will operate five Boeing 777F flights a week between Hong Kong and London on behalf of IAG Cargo, providing continuity of service for IAG Cargo customers.
The agreement marks a transition for IAG Cargo and follows the company’s decision to transfer freighter operations from its current provider, Global Supply Systems.
IAG Cargo connects 350 destinations worldwide, serving the world’s economic hubs with cargo-friendly wide-bodied planes. Through its Constant Climate network, it has one of the largest networks globally for handling temperature-sensitive air cargo.
Qatar Airways is already a partner with IAG through the oneworld global alliance which it joined in October 2013. The airline is taking delivery of a further three Boeing 777F aircraft during 2014.
Top Copyright Photo: Rainer Bexten/AirlinersGallery.com. This decision will end British Airways World Cargo and Global Supply Systems. GSS operated Boeing 747-87UF G-GSSD (msn 37562) in British Airways World Cargo colors departs graceful from Cologne/Bonn.
Bottom Copyright Photo: Ton Jochems/AirlinersGallery.com. Boeing 777-FDZ A7-BFA (msn 36098) of Qatar Airways Cargo taxies at Amsterdam.
Al Maha, the new subsidiary of Qatar Airways (Doha), will start scheduled passenger operations in neighboring Saudi Arabia no later than the third quarter of this year with Airbus A320s according to this report by Bloomberg. Al Maha will use the same logo of Qatar Airways but in green to match the colors of Saudi Arabia. Al Maha will operate with 10 Airbus A320s in the first year. The fleet is expected to grow to around 50 aircraft.
Read the full report: CLICK HERE
The airline is named after the al-Maha deer known for its beautiful eyes. Qatar Airways logo (above) is based on the Oryx, a genus consisting of four large antelope species. Three of them are native to the arid parts of Africa, and the fourth to the Arabian Peninsula according to Wikipedia.
Qatar Airways expands its code-share agreement with US Airways, will launch a new route from Philadelphia to Doha on April 2
Qatar Airways (Doha) today announced the expansion of a code-share agreement with US Airways (Phoenix) for flights via Philadelphia International Airport (PHL). The agreement will provide millions of Americans the opportunity to fly internationally with Qatar Airways out of PHL using the seamless connection service on select code-share flights operated by US Airways.
Qatar Airways will launch daily nonstop service from Philadelphia to Doha, Qatar on April 2, 2014.
The partnership will further expand the opportunities of U.S. travelers flying internationally who want to use Qatar Airways’ growing list of destinations. Connections to PHL through US Airways are available from the following cities:
- Los Angeles, CA (LAX)
- San Francisco, CA (SFO)
- Chicago, IL (ORD)
- Boston, MA (BOS)
- Miami, FL (MIA)
- Tampa, FL (TPA)
- Fort Lauderdale, FL (FLL)
- Palm Beach, FL (PBI)
- Fort Myers, FL (RSW)
- Las Vegas, NV (LAS)
- Phoenix, AZ (PHX)
- Charlotte, NC (CLT)
- Raleigh-Durham, NC (RDU)
Qatar Airways and US Airways’ code-share and frequent flyer partnership, which launched in 2009, focused on flights between Doha and the United States and Europe, as well as connecting flights from select European gateways to Doha. The code-share agreement will provide customers the convenience of a single combined ticket for Qatar Airways and US Airways operated connections, and will include the benefits of one-stop check-in and automatic baggage transfer. In addition, the airlines’ frequent flyer program members may earn miles or points while traveling on all flights of the other carrier and may redeem award tickets as well.
Qatar Airways joined the oneworld® alliance on October 30, 2013 and US Airways will become a member on March 31, 2014.
Copyright Photo: Michael B. Ing/AirlinersGallery.com. Boeing 777-2DZ LR (Longer Range) A7-BBA (msn 36012) arrives in London (Heathrow).
Qatar Airways (Doha) today announced it will be extending its footprint in the USA by announcing its seventh gateway to Dallas/Fort Worth (DFW). Service will commence on July 1, 2014. The move was expected due to its new Oneworld relationship with partner American Airlines (Dallas/Fort Worth).
The Dallas/Fort Worth route will be operated with the airline’s flagship Boeing 777-200LR aircraft, which features a two-class design with 42 Business Class lie-flat seats in a 2-2-2 configuration (below).
Qatar Airways currently flies to four destinations in the United States – New York (JFK), Washington (Dulles), Chicago (O’Hare) and Houston (Bush Intercontinental). The airline will nearly double its footprint in the United States with the addition of three new routes in 2014: Philadelphia (April 2, 2014), Miami (June 10, 2014) and now Dallas/Fort Worth (July 1, 2014).
Copyright Photo: Christian Volpati/AirlinersGallery.com. Boeing 777-2DZ LR A7-BBE (msn 36017) taxies at Paris (CDG).
Qatar Airways (Doha) announced it will begin flights to the Scottish capital of Edinburgh effective May 28, 2014, operating five flights weekly.
The new route will be served by a Boeing 787 Dreamliner in a two-cabin configuration, offering passengers 22 Business Class and 232 Economy Class seats. The schedule for the new destination is as follows:
Doha to/from Edinburgh:
Monday, Wednesday, Friday, Saturday and Sunday
QR 027 departs Doha (DOH) at 08:00; arrives Edinburgh (EDI) at 13:15
QR 028 departs Edinburgh (EDI) at 14:45; arrives Doha (DOH) at 23:40
Qatar Airways has seen rapid growth in just 16 years of operations, currently flying a modern fleet of 128 aircraft to 133 key business and leisure destinations across Europe, Middle East, Africa, Asia Pacific and The Americas.
In 2013, Qatar Airways has launched eleven destinations to date – Gassim (Saudi Arabia), Najaf (Iraq), Phnom Penh (Cambodia), Chicago (USA), Salalah (Oman), Basra (Iraq), Sulaymaniyah (Iraq), Chengdu (China), Addis Ababa (Ethiopia), Ta’if (Saudi Arabia) and most recently Clark Manila International Airport (Philippines).
Over the next few weeks and months, the network will grow further with Hangzhou, China (December 20, 2013), Sharjah and Dubai World Central, both in the UAE (March 1, 2014), Philadelphia, USA (April 2, 2014) and Miami, USA (June 10, 2014).
Copyright Photo: Stefan Sjogren/AirlinersGallery.com. Boeing 787-8 A7-BCE (msn 38323) lands in Stockholm Arlanda.
Qatar Airways (Doha) has placed a firm order for five new Airbus A330-200 Freighter aircraft in an agreement signed at the Dubai Airshow 2013. These new aircraft will complement the airline’s rapidly growing network, which includes more than 40 routes that have dedicated freighter services. Included in the order are eight additional A330-200F options – which would make today’s deal potentially worth over $2.8bn at list prices for a total of 13 aircraft. These aircraft on order will complement three A330-200Fs Qatar Airways already operates since earlier this year.
Copyright Photo: Paul Denton/AirlinersGallery.com. Qatar Airways Cargo Airbus A330-243F A7-AFY (msn 1386) arrives in Dubai.
Boeing launches the 777X today with orders from Lufthansa, Etihad Airways, Qatar Airways and Emirates
Boeing (Chicago) today formally launched the 777X program at the 2013 Dubai Airshow with a record-breaking number of customer orders and commitments for the newest member of its twin-aisle product family. Agreements for 259 airplanes from four customers across Europe and the Middle East provide a strong foundation to support development and production of the airplane.
Representing the largest product launch in commercial jetliner history by dollar value, 777X orders and commitments include Lufthansa with 34 airplanes; Etihad Airways with 25; Qatar Airways with 50 and Emirates with 150 airplanes. The combined value of the agreements is more than $95 billion at list prices.
The 777X builds on the passenger-preferred and market-leading 777, which today commands 55 percent of market share in its category in terms of backlog, and 71 percent of the in-service fleet worldwide. The 777X family includes the 777-8X and the 777-9X, both designed to respond to market needs and customer preferences.
The 777X builds on the best-in-class dispatch reliability from today’s 777, as well as offering more market coverage and revenue capability that surpasses the competition. The 777-8X competes directly with the A350-1000, while the 777-9X is in a class by itself.
Opening new growth opportunities for airlines, the 777-9X offers seating for more than 400 passengers, depending on an airline’s configuration choices. With a range of more than 8,200 nautical miles (15,185 km), the airplane will have the lowest operating cost per seat of any commercial airplane.
The second member of the family, the 777-8X, will be the most flexible jet in the world. The airplane will seat 350 passengers and offer an incredible range capability of more than 9,300 nautical miles (17,220 km). In addition, the airplane will have unmatched takeoff and payload capability compared to the competition.
The 777X introduces the latest technologies in multiple places, including the most advanced commercial engine ever – the GE9X by GE Aviation – and an all-new high-efficiency composite wing that has a longer span than today’s 777. The airplane’s folding, raked wingtip and optimized span deliver greater efficiency, significant fuel savings and complete airport gate compatibility.
Like the 787 Dreamliner which was launched as the 7E7, the 777X will be formally named at a later date. Design of the 777X is underway and suppliers will be named in the coming months. Production is set to begin in 2017, with first delivery targeted for 2020.
According to Reuters, Boeing will firm up the configuration of the aircraft in 2015 and plans to have a detailed design by 2016.
Production will begin in 2017, with the first test flight scheduled for 2019 and first delivery in 2020.
The Launch Customers:
Qatar Airways (Doha) becomes part of oneworld® alliance at midnight Doha time tonight, adding one of the world’s fastest growing and most highly rated airlines to the world’s fastest growing and most highly rated global airline alliance.
From its first flights tomorrow morning – QR 633 which leaves Dhaka for Doha at 03.15 local (00.15 Doha time) and the QR 1166 from Doha for Riyadh, leaving five minutes later at 00.20 Doha time – Qatar Airways will be offering oneworld’s full range of services and benefits.
Qatar Airways joins oneworld just one year after receiving its invitation to join, which makes its induction into oneworld one of the fastest in the alliance’s history. A more typical timeline for an airline to comply with the many membership requirements of oneworld is 18-24 months.
For Qatar Airways, joining oneworld marks the latest achievement in its 16-year history. One of just seven carriers worldwide rated fivestar by the Skytrax airline quality agency and the organisation’s Airline of the Year 2011 and 2012 and runner-up 2013, Qatar Airways is the only one of the major Gulf carriers to join any of the global airline alliances.
Becoming part of oneworld, which holds more “best alliance” awards than any of its competitors, will strengthen Qatar Airways’ competitiveness, enabling it to offer customers an unrivalled alliance global network served by partners that include leading airlines from every region.
Qatar Airways, which serves more than 130 destinations in 70 countries across the Middle East, Europe, Africa, North and South America, Asia and Australasia, is oneworld’s second member airline based in the Middle East. It makes oneworld the leading alliance in one of the world’s fastest growing regions for air travel demand.
More than 20 of its destinations and five countries – Ethiopia, Iran, Rwanda, Serbia and Tanzania – will be new to the oneworld map. More significantly, Qatar Airways will substantially strengthen the alliance’s customer offering by providing superior routing alternatives across many hundreds of city pairs. For example, passengers flying between Asia and Southern Europe or between Asia and Africa will now have convenient one-stop connections not previously available within the oneworld network.
Worldwide, with the other airlines lining up to join, oneworld will:
- Serve almost a thousand airports in more than 150 countries, with 14,000 daily departures.
- Carry 475 million passengers a year on a combined fleet of some 3,300 aircraft.
- Generate US$ 140 billion annual revenues.
Qatar Airways 777 in oneworld livery is first aircraft to ‘land’ at Hamad International Airport
At a ceremony to mark its entry into oneworld, held at Hamad International Airport, which will open soon as Qatar Airways’ new home base, Qatar Airways spectacularly “unveiled” the first aircraft in its fleet to be decorated in a special oneworld livery – with the Boeing 777-300 becoming the first aircraft to “land” at the new airport.
The state-of-the-art $15.5 billion Hamad International Airport is designed to strengthen Doha’s role as a premium global hub. The new airport has an eventual capacity for 50 million passengers a year.
Under the patronage of the Prime Minister of Qatar His Excellency Sheikh Abdullah Bin Nasser bin Khalifa Al-Thani, the ceremony was hosted by Qatar Airways’ Chief Executive Akbar Al Baker and attended by the CEOs and senior executives from all other oneworld member airlines, including:
- Chief Executive of IAG, the parent company of oneworld’s British Airways and Iberia and also of Vueling, which is not part of the alliance, Willie Walsh.
- oneworld CEO Bruce Ashby.
- Finnair’s President and Chief Executive Pekka Vauramo.
- Japan Airlines’ Chairman Masaru Onishi.
- Malaysia Airlines’ Group CEO Ahmad Jauhari Yahya.
- Member elect SriLankan Airlines Chairman Nishantha Wickramasinghe and Chief Executive Kapila Chandrasena.
- airberlin’s Senior Vice-President Alliances Stephan Nagel.
- American Airlines’ Vice-President Strategic Alliance Kurt Stache.
- British Airways’ Director of Strategy and Business Units Lynne Embleton.
- Cathay Pacific Airways’ Director of Sales and Marketing Rupert Hogg.
- Iberia’s Director of Alliances Antonio Pimentel.
- LATAM Airlines Group’s Vice-President Strategic Alliances Soledad Berrios.
- Qantas’ Chief Executive Loyalty Lesley Grant.
- Royal Jordanian’s Chief Commercial Officer Basma Majali.
- S7 Deputy Chief Executive for Strategy Vadim Besperstov.
As they assembled, the 777-300 in its oneworld livery flew overhead before landing and becoming the first aircraft to taxi onto a stand in front of Hamad International Airport’s terminal building.
Its distinctive design features “oneworld” in blue letters some 6 ft (2 metre) high along a white fuselage and the airline’s standard tailfin, serving as a huge flying billboard highlighting that Qatar Airways is now offering the full range of oneworld services and benefits. The airline will decorate three other aircraft in its fleet in this special livery – another 777 and two Airbus A320s.
They will spearhead a massive marketing drive to promote the airline’s addition to the alliance. Starting tonight, oneworld logos will be applied by the side passenger entrance doors on Qatar Airway’s entire fleet of 130 aircraft as part of a massive rebranding programme that will also see the alliance logo added virtually wherever the Qatar Airways name is displayed – at airport check-in desks and signage, on its website, tickets, boarding passes and all items of stationery.
Qatar Airways’ addition to oneworld tonight will be promoted with of one of the biggest marketing campaigns in the airline’s history, too, with an extensive advertising campaign to highlight the new alliance services and benefits available to its customers.
All cardholders in its Privilege Club frequent flyer programme are being sent new membership cards, bearing the oneworld logo and “gemstone” tier indicator, to ensure they receive their alliance benefits from tomorrow when travelling throughout the entire oneworld global network.
Qatar Airways’ entry into oneworld completes what has been one of the biggest projects in the airline’s history, with working groups covering some 20 streams of activity, bringing its various internal processes and procedures into line with the alliance’s requirements, and running extensive employee training and communications programmes. British Airways has been supporting Qatar Airways through its alliance implementation project, as its oneworld sponsor airline, with backing from the central oneworld team.
Since accepting its invitation to join the alliance a year ago, Qatar Airways has expanded its code-sharing relationships to two established oneworld partners – American Airlines and Malaysia Airlines.
Watch a live streaming video of the press conference at 1000 local Doha time: CLICK HERE
Qatar Airways (Doha), not surprisingly, given its expanding relationship with American Airlines (Dallas/Fort Worth), is coming to Miami. The fast-growing carrier will add the Doha-Miami nonstop route on June 1, 2014 with Boeing 777-200 LRs. The route will operate initially four days a week according to the Miami Herald. This will open a lot of Asian one stop connections via Doha’s new Hamad International Airport for South Florida passengers.
The Doha route will be the longest passenger route from MIA at 6,6667 nautical miles, making it one of the longest air routes in the world.
Qatar Airways will join the Oneworld alliance on October 30, 2013.
Read the full article: CLICK HERE
Update: Qatar Airways made the news official on Monday, October 21 with this announcement:
Qatar Airways, the national carrier for Qatar, has announced Miami (IATA code: MIA) to be its sixth destination to the U.S. beginning on June 10, 2014. The airline will offer nonstop flights from its hub in Doha four-times per week aboard a Boeing 777.
Qatar Airways currently operates to Chicago (O’Hare), Houston (Bush Intercontinental), New York (JFK), and Washington D.C. (Dulles), in the U.S. and will add Philadelphia in April 2014. The airline will operate a Boeing 777-200 LR to Miami with a two-class configuration with 42 seats in Business and 217 seats in Economy.
Qatar Airways will begin operations to and from Miami (MIA) as per below schedule effective June 10, 2014:
|Tuesday, Thursday, Saturday and Sunday
QR777 Departs DOH 08:40 hrs Arrives MIA 17:20 hrs Travel time: 15:40
Tuesday, Thursday, Saturday and Sunday
QR778 Departs MIA 21:15 hrs Arrives DOH 18:20 hrs +1 day Travel time: 14:20
Qatar Airways has seen rapid growth in just 16 years of operations, currently flying a modern fleet of 129 aircraft to 131 key business and leisure destinations across Europe, Middle East, Africa, Asia Pacific and The Americas.
In 2013, Qatar Airways has launched ten destinations to date – Gassim (Saudi Arabia), Najaf (Iraq), Phnom Penh (Cambodia), Chicago (USA), Salalah (Oman), Basra (Iraq), Sulaymaniyah (Iraq), Chengdu (China), Addis Ababa (Ethiopia), and most recently Ta’if (Saudi Arabia).
Over the next few weeks and months, the network will grow further with Clark Manila International Airport, Philippines (October 28) and Philadelphia, USA (April 2, 2014).
Copyright Photo: Paul Denton/AirlinersGallery.com. Qatar Airways Boeing 777-2DZ LR A7-BBG (msn 36101) prepares to land at Johannesburg.
American Airlines (Dallas/Fort Worth) is planning (subject to change) to operate the last Boeing 767-200 revenue flight on May 7, 2014 between Los Angeles and New York (JFK) according to Airline Route.
The 767-200 is mainly being used on the trans-con routes and will be replaced with new Airbus A321-200s.
American introduced the 767-200 in November 1982 and has been gradually phasing out the venerable type.
In other news, American Airlines and Qatar Airways (Doha) today announce an expansion of their relationship to include a reciprocal frequent flyer program agreement, providing customers more opportunities to earn and redeem miles when traveling across each airline’s global network.
Copyright Photo: James Helbock/AirlinersGallery.com. The Boeing 767-200s are not being repainted in the new livery because of the imminent retirement. Boeing 767-223 ER N320AA (msn 22321) “Flagship Independence” climbs away from the runway at Los Angeles International Airport.
Qatar Airways (Doha) will become a full member of oneworld® on October 30, 2013, adding one of the world’s fastest growing and most highly rated airlines to the world’s leading quality airline alliance, according to the airline and the alliance.
One of just seven carriers worldwide rated five-star by the Skytrax airline quality agency and the organization’s Airline of the Year 2011 and 2012 and runner-up 2013, Qatar Airways is the only one of the “Gulf Big Three” carriers slated to join any of the global airline alliances.
Qatar Airways received clearance to board oneworld after successfully completing a thorough review of its readiness, conducted by British Airways, which is sponsoring Qatar Airways’ entry into the alliance, with oneworld’s central team.
Qatar Airways completes its oneworld implementation program just one year after receiving its invitation to join, announced at a press conference in the alliance’s New York home in October 2012. This will make its induction into oneworld one of the fastest in the alliance’s history. Normally it takes around 18 months for any airline to be readied to enter any alliance.
Qatar Airways’ addition to oneworld will come shortly before the airline moves into its new home base, Hamad International Airport, which has been designed to strengthen Doha’s position as a premium global hub, with an eventual capacity for 50 million passengers a year.
From its first flights on October 30, Qatar Airways will offer oneworld’s full range of services and benefits.
Qatar Airways is already participating in Global Explorer, the round-the-world fare offered by all oneworld members and various airlines that are not part of the alliance. When it becomes part of oneworld, Qatar Airways’ network – serving 130 destinations in 70 countries across the Middle East, Europe, Africa, North and South America, Asia and Australasia – will be covered by the full and extensive range of oneworld fare and sales products.
More than 20 of its destinations and five countries – Ethiopia, Iran, Rwanda, Serbia and Tanzania – will be new to the oneworld map. More significantly, Qatar Airways will substantially strengthen the alliance’s customer offering by providing superior routing alternatives across many hundreds of city pairs. For example, passengers flying between Asia and Southern Europe or between Asia and Africa will now have convenient one-stop connections not previously available within the oneworld network.
Its implementation, making oneworld the leading alliance in the Middle East region, comes as the group undergoes the biggest expansion in its history with:
• The addition of Malaysia Airlines, one of this industry’s most frequent award winners, six months ago, further strengthening oneworld’s position in South East Asia, one of the fastest growing regions for air travel demand.
• The switch in the second quarter of next year to oneworld from the Star Alliance by TAM, the leading airline in Latin America’s leading economy, Brazil, along with its Paraguayan affiliate, following the addition to oneworld on 1 October 2013 of the newest member of the LAN group, LAN Colombia, solidifying oneworld’s position as the leading alliance in Latin America.
• The introduction early next year of SriLankan Airlines, as the first airline from the Indian subcontinent to join any global alliance, which, with Qatar Airways, will make oneworld the leading alliance in the region.
In addition, US Airways proposes to switch from Star to oneworld as part of its planned merger with American Airlines, subject to necessary approvals.
With Qatar Airways and the other airlines lining up to join, oneworld will:
• Serve almost a thousand airports in more than 150 countries, with 14,000 daily departures.
• Carry 480 million passengers a year on a combined fleet of almost 3,500 aircraft.
• Generate US$ 140 billion annual revenues
Qatar Airways Chief Executive Officer Akbar Al Baker said: “In Qatar Airways’ relatively short history, we have quickly established a reputation for innovation, quality and excellence in everything we do. We are pleased to build on that by becoming the only major airline from the Gulf to date to be joining any of the global airline alliances. We are proud to entering the best of them, in oneworld – and to be doing so in record quick time. We very much look forward to flying alongside some of the best airlines in the world from 30 October, bringing the heightened benefits offered by oneworld to our customers.”
Top Copyright Photo: Bruce Drum/AirlinersGallery.com (all others by Qatar Airways). Airbus A321-231 A7-ADX (msn 3397) climbs away from the runway at the old Doha International Airport. The new replacement Hamad International Airport has been built on reclaimed land adjacent to the old airport.
Qatar Airways’ (Doha) first A380 took off from Toulouse on its maiden flight to Hamburg where the aircraft will be fitted with its cabin before being painted.
The carrier has firm orders for ten A380s and will become the eleventh airline to join the prestigious club of A380 operators when it takes delivery of this aircraft in 2014.
Copyright Photo: Airbus. Airbus A380-861 F-WWST (msn 137) departs from Toulouse.
Qatar Airways (Doha) on September 3 further expanded its operations in China with the launch of scheduled flights to Chengdu, the airline’s sixth destination to China.
Flight QR 884 arrived at Chengdu Shuangliu International Airport to an impressive water salute, following its nonstop journey from the airline’s operational hub in Doha, capital of the State of Qatar. All passengers and operating crew of the maiden flight received a warm welcome from the airport officials.
The new thrice weekly flights now join Qatar Airways’ five other Chinese gateways – Beijing, Shanghai, Guangzhou, Hong Kong and Chongqing – for a total of 41 flights per week.
Chengdu becomes the 130th destination in the Qatar Airways global network, and now adds to over 15% of the airline’s routes which fly across Asia.
The Chengdu route is operated with an Airbus A330 in a two-class configuration of up to 248 seats in Economy and 36 in Business Class. The aircraft features seatback TV screens providing all passengers in both cabins with the next generation interactive onboard entertainment system – a choice of more than 900 audio and video on demand options.
Added Al Baker: “2013 has been a fantastic year for Qatar Airways and today we expand to eight new routes since this January. Over the next few years, we will increase our global footprint, providing greater travel options for business and leisure passengers, taking them to key business markets, holiday hotspots and underserved regions around the world.”
Flight schedules, between Chengdu and Doha, are as follows:
DOHA – CHENGDU: 3-times-a-week, effective September 3, 2013
Tuesdays, Thursdays and Saturdays
QR884 Depart Doha at 0200 hrs Arrive Chengdu at 1430 hrs
CHENGDU– DOHA: 3-times-a-week, effective September 3, 2013
Wednesdays, Fridays and Sundays
QR885 Depart Chengdu at 0100 hrs Arrive Doha at 0350 hrs
Qatar Airways has seen rapid growth in just 16 years of operations, currently flying a modern fleet of 129 aircraft to 130 key business and leisure destinations worldwide.
Qatar Airways has so far launched eight destinations this year – Gassim (Saudi Arabia), Najaf (Iraq), Phnom Penh (Cambodia), Chicago (USA), Salalah (Oman), Basra (Iraq), Sulaymaniyah (Iraq) and Chengdu, China.
Over the next few months, the network will expand with the addition of further destinations – Addis Ababa, Ethiopia (September 18), Ta’if, Saudi Arabia (October 2), Clark International Airport, Philippines (October 27) and Philadelphia, USA (April 2, 2014).
In other news, Qatar Airways has announced frequency increases to destinations in Eastern Europe, Middle East and Asia Pacific in preparation for the busy winter season.
Strong passenger demand and additional aircraft inducted to the fleet has prompted the Doha-based airline to add frequencies to its popular and growing routes. Highlights of the frequency increases are:
Ankara (Turkey) 4 flights a week from 3 beginning Sep 18
Belgrade (Serbia) 4 flights a week from 3 beginning Sep 18
Bucharest (Romania) 5 flights a week from 4 beginning Sep 17
Dubai (UAE) 91 flights a week from 77 (13 daily flights) from Aug 1
Islamabad (Pakistan) 7 flights a week from 4 (daily flights) beginning Oct 27
Jakarta (Indonesia) 14 flights a week from 11 (double-daily flights) beginning Sep 1
Manama (Bahrain) 49 flights a week from 47 (7 times a day) beginning Sep 15
Moscow (Russia) 12 flights a week from 10 beginning Sep 3
Sofia (Bulgaria) 5 flights a week from 4 beginning Sep 17
Yangon (Myanmar) 7 flights a week from 3 (daily flights beginning Oct 27
On August 1 Qatar Airways increased its frequency on its very popular Doha – Dubai route with two additional daily flights, taking its capacity up to 13 services per day. Dubai has the highest frequency in the airline’s route network; this popular Gulf destination is served 91 times a week.
Flights to the Gulf region will see another increase as services to Manama in Bahrain will rise by seven to a total of 49 flights each week.
Expansion highlights also include one additional weekly flight to key European routes Ankara, Belgrade, Bucharest and Sofia and flights to Moscow will grow from 10 to 12 weekly flights.
Yangon, which was re-launched last October with three flights a week, will be upgraded to a daily nonstop service.
Another popular far-eastern route Jakarta will see increase in capacity from 11 to 14 flights a week, resulting in double-daily flights to the Indonesian capital city.
Qatar Airways will also be strengthening its commitment to Pakistan; the recent frequency increases to Karachi, Lahore and Peshawar will be supplemented by Islamabad moving from four weekly services to a daily service.
Copyright Photo: Qatar Airways.
Video: Richard Quest’s Interview with Qatar CEO Akbar Al Baker:
Qatar Airways (Doha) has officially launched the start of its three year partnership with FC Barcelona at an event held at Camp Nou.
The airline’s partnership with FCB took effect from July 1 this year.
In attendance were leading representatives of both organizations, the CEO of Qatar Airways, Akbar Al-Baker, the President of FC Barcelona, Sandro Rosell and Vice President of FC Barcelona Economic and Strategy Area, Javier Faus.
Since its beginnings, FC Barcelona has been characterized by being not just a football organization, but also a powerful force for globalization, solidarity, integration and social cohesion. Qatar Airways fully identifies with these values, which is why this partnership between both organizations is much more than just a simple economic alliance. Furthermore, Qatar Airways’ partnership with FC Barcelona will help to position the airline in the world.
Qatar Airways will work with FC Barcelona to create joint initiatives and will especially focus on connecting with the club’s fans and also with underprivileged children to spread the love of the game to all corners of the globe.
A new FC Barcelona logojet is on the horizon.
Copyright Photo: Ton Jochems/AirlinersGallery.com. Boeing 777-FDZ A7-BFD (msn 41427) of the cargo division of Qatar Airways taxies at Amsterdam.
Qatar Airways‘ (Doha) grounded Boeing 787-8 A7-BCB (msn 38320) was returned to service yesterday (July 31) after being grounded by the airline since July 21 due to unspecified “technical issues” according to this report by Reuters. A7-BCB successfully operated a round trip between Doha and Frankfurt.
Read the full report: CLICK HERE
Copyright Photo: Eurospot/AirlinersGallery.com. A7-BCB arrives at Dubai.
Qatar Airways (Doha) stated yesterday (July 26) it had taken one of its Boeing 787-8 out of service for a “minor” technical issue according to this report by Reuters. New pressure is mounting on Boeing over possible new electrical problems.
The airline and Boeing declined to give further details but industry sources said they were treating seriously reports that the aircraft had been grounded for days after smoke was seen near an electrical panel according to the report.
Read the full report: CLICK HERE
Copyright Photo: Nick Dean/AirlinersGallery.com. Newly-manufactured Boeing 787-8 A7-BCE (msn 38323) is pictured leaving Paine Field near Everett, WA yesterday (July 26) on delivery.