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Doha, Qatar – Hamad International Airport welcomed a celebratory Qatar Airways’ VIP flight this morning, upon the airport’s highly anticipated soft opening.

The Qatar Airways A320 aircraft, which left Doha International Airport just before 11:00am, landed on Hamad International Airport’s Easterly runway shortly afterwards. Upon arrival, QR7450 was greeted by a traditional water salute and a warm welcome from gathering crowds at gate B3, on one of the airport’s new concourses.

Onboard the inaugural flight to Hamad International Airport were VIPs and other dignitaries, including; Minister of Transportation, His Excellency Mr. Jassim Al Sulaiti, Chief Executive Officer of Qatar Airways, His Excellency Mr. Akbar Al Baker and Chairman of the Qatar Civil Aviation Authority, His Excellency Mr. Abdul Aziz Mohammad Al Noaimi.

Also onboard were NDIA Project Director, Mr. Bernardo Gogna, together with other members of the New Doha International Airport Steering Committee, Mr. Nassr Al Ansari, Mr. Mohammad Al Meer, Mr. Abdulla Al Muraikhi, Mr Abdulla Al Asiri, Mr. Eissa Al Rumaihi, Mr. Ali Al Abdulla, Mr. Saad Al Otaibi and Dr. Jaffar Abdulrahim. Joining them were Manager of Airport Security, Mr. Eissa Arrar Al Romaihi, Manager of Airport Immigration, Colonel Mohamed Al Mazroui and Aeronautical College Manager, Mr. Ali Al Malki.

Following the soft launch today, 10 airlines are now operating fully from Hamad International Airport. These are;

Biman Bangladesh Airlines, flydubai, Air Arabia, Iran Air, Air India Express, Yemenia, Pakistan International Airlines, Syrian Airlines, Pegasus Airlines and Nepal Airlines. 

Qatar Airways will move its entire hub operations to Hamad International Airport on 27th May.

Qatar Airways Chief Executive Officer, His Excellency Mr. Akbar Al Baker said: “It is a historic moment, not only in the history of our airline, but for the State of Qatar, to see this Qatar Airways VIP flight touch down at the newly opened Hamad International Airport.

“Today’s highly anticipated opening of the new airport signifies to the world that Doha is now ready to open its doors for passengers to experience an airport that transforms the travel experience, and it is with much excitement that we await the move of all Qatar Airways flights to this new facility on the 27th May.”

Hamad International Airport is the world’s latest global gateway and will raise the bar on passenger expectations, thanks to its state-of-the-art facilities and passenger focused design.

Designed to accommodate 30 million passengers annually, rising to 50 million upon full completion, the airport covers an area of 29 sq kms and is 60 per cent built on land reclaimed from the Gulf.

Qatar Airways, the national carrier for the State of Qatar, will officially move to Hamad International Airport on the 27th May. The airline 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 138 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 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).

For images: https://www.flickr.com/photos/qatarairways/sets/72157644391989346/

Notes to Editors:

Qatar Airways is the national carrier of the State of Qatar. 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 134 aircraft flying to 138 key business and leisure destinations across six continents.

On October 30, 2013, Qatar Airways joined the oneworld Alliance, becoming the first Gulf carrier to join a global airline alliance, enabling its customers to benefit from almost 1,000 airports in more than 150 countries, with 14,000 daily departures.

Award-winning carrier Qatar Airways was presented with three honours at the annual Skytrax 2013 World Airline Awards held during the Paris Air Show at Le Bourget, France, last June. The airline was awarded World’s Best Business Class, World’s Best Business Class Lounge and, for the second consecutive year, Best Airline Staff Service in the Middle East.

During the 2013 Dubai Air Show the airline placed orders for more than 60 new aircraft – a mixture of Boeing 777X and Airbus A330 Freighters. In total the airline has 300 aircraft on order worth more than US $50 billion. The airline will move into its new hub and home, Hamad International Airport, in 2014. For more information, visit our homepage www.qatarairways.com or our sites on Facebook, Twitter, Google+, Instagram, and YouTube.

For Qatar Airways corporate images, please click here: http://www.qatarairways.com/corporateimages

For further information contact:
Qatar Airways Group, Corporate Communications Department
Tel: +974 40222072, Fax: +974 40225350
E-mail: qrmedia@qatarairways.com.qa
Website: www.qatarairways.com

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