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Qatar Airways Launches Flights To Idyllic Islands

Mahe, SEYCHELLES – Qatar Airways, one of the fastest growing airlines in the world, has celebrated the launch of non-stop scheduled services between Doha and the idyllic Indian Ocean islands of the Seychelles.

The airline's inaugural flight touched down at Mahe International Airport with a delegation of officials, travel agents, tour operators and media from Qatar, headed up by Regional Manager Qatar and Africa, John Brayford.

Government officials from the Seychelles greeted the first flight in the early hours. Among the welcoming party was the Principal Secretary for Tourism, Eddie Bell, and Principal Secretary for Transport, Gerard Lafortune and the Director of Civil Aviation, Gilbert Faure.

Seychelles becomes the third destination launched within a week by Qatar Airways from its operational hub in Doha, capital of the State of Qatar in the Arabian Gulf.

Scheduled flights to Beijing and London Gatwick joined the network last week, boosting the airline's global route structure to 56 destinations across Europe, Middle East, Africa, Indian subcontinent and the Far East.

Qatar Airways operates four flights a week on the Seychelles route in an Airbus A320 configured in 12 Business Class seats and 132 Economy.

Seychelles is made up of 115 islands scattered over 1 million square kilometres , offering immaculate white-sand beaches, lush, tropical forests and spectacular diving spots.

Qatar Airways Chief Executive Officer Akbar Al Baker said Seychelles marked a significant addition to the airline's global strategy of serving high-yield holiday and business destinations.

“Qatar Airways is keen on establishing a route network that is diverse in its selection of destinations to give our customers greater freedom of choice when selecting their holidays,” he said.

“There are few places on earth that can still be described as paradise, but the Seychelles certainly fall into that category, making it one of the most sought-after destinations for travellers seeking complete serenity and tranquility.

“With the addition of direct flights to the Seychelles, we are certain that we will continue on this successful path of maintaining our reputation as one of the fastest growing airlines in the world,” added Al Baker.

Qatar Airways flight QR700 leaves Doha at 0830 hrs on Tuesdays and Saturdays, arriving in the Seychelles at 1430 hrs local time, and flight QR702 leaves Doha at 2300 hrs on Wednesdays and Sundays, arriving in the Seychelles at 0500 hrs local time.

Return flight QR701 leaves the Seychelles on Tuesdays at 1915 hrs, arriving at Doha International Airport at 2320 hrs local time; flight QR701 leaves the Seychelles at 2015 hrs on Saturdays, arriving in Doha at 0020 hrs local time; flight QR703 leaves Seychelles at 0745 on Mondays and Thursdays, arriving in Doha at 1150 on the same day.

The airline steps up a gear next month when it launches flights to Yangon, capital of Myanmar in Southeast Asia, on January 8, and both Johannesburg and Cape Town from January 16.

In addition to the winter 2005 flying programme, Qatar Airways will launch services to Osaka, Athens, Tunis and Algiers from summer 2005.

By the end of 2005, the airline plans to serve at least 70 destinations, including cities in North America and Australia.

As one of the fastest growing and youngest carriers in the world, Qatar Airways has made significant inroads in the global aviation industry to become an award-winning airline in just a short few years.

“We recently joined an elite club of only two other airlines to be awarded a Five Star ranking for our high standards, excellent service and good quality by Skytrax, the independent aviation industry monitoring agency,” added Al Baker.

Skytrax has also ranked Qatar Airways' cabin crew as the best in the Middle East for the second year running and fifth best in the world following a survey of more than two million passengers worldwide.

Qatar Airways operates a modern all-Airbus fleet of 36 aircraft, which will double in size over the next few years following a $5.1bn order for 34 additional Airbus jets.

Doha-based Qatar Airways will operate a fleet of 110 aircraft by 2013 – almost double the existing size. Qatar Airways has ordered 80 Airbus A350s, 60 Boeing 787s and 32 Boeing 777s, with deliveries of the latter having started in November 2007. The airline is a launch customer of the twin-deck Airbus A380 ‘super jumbos’ with five aircraft on order and scheduled for delivery from 2010. Qatar Airways moves to the New Doha International Airport in 2010, when the first phase of the new facility opens. For more information, visit www.ndiaproject.com

Qatar Airways is one of only six airlines in the world with a Five Star ranking for service and excellence awarded by Skytrax, the independent aviation industry monitoring agency. Skytrax also named Qatar Airways’ cabin crew as Best in the Middle East for the fifth year running in 2007 following a survey of more than 15 million passengers worldwide. For more information, log onto www.qatarairways.com


Qatar Airways Corporate Communications
Tel: +974 4496956, Fax: +974 4620132
E-mail: qrmedia@qatarairways.com.qa

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