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Qatar Airways Going Double Daily To Paris

Le Bourget, PARIS AIR SHOW – Qatar Airways wrapped up a hugely successful Paris Air Show by announcing that it was increasing flights between Doha and Paris to twice-daily services – up from the current 11 frequencies a week.

The additional services, effective from the start of the Northern Winter schedules on October 25, will strengthen Qatar Airways’ operations in Europe and offer passengers more choice with increased connectivity to points across the Middle East, South Asia and the Far East.

The announcement comes as icing on the cake during a hugely successful week for the airline at Le Bourget, venue for the centenary edition of the Paris Air Show.

Qatar Airways made the biggest impact on the opening day of the week-long event by signing an order for 24 Airbus A320 Family of aircraft, together with a US$700 million deal with IAE’s V2500 SelectOne engines to power the new fleet.

With the official launch of Qatar Executive, the Middle East’s first corporate jet company run by a scheduled airline, Qatar Airways was In buoyant mood during the show, demonstrating its long-term commitment to the aviation industry.

Qatar Airways’ eagerly awaited launch date of operations to Australia finally materialised with December 6 announced for the thrice-weekly non-stop service between Doha and Melbourne. Going daily soon after and with flights to Sydney following in due course, Qatar Airways’ remains committed to further route expansion.

Qatar Airways Chief Executive Officer Akbar Al Baker said he was looking forward to the next few months as the airline’s expansion plans will see new aircraft joining the fleet and new routes added to the network.

“Qatar Airways this week made yet another a significant mark at the Paris Air Show with a number of announcements showing our commitment to developing our network, expanding our operation, boosting our fleet size, and growing our business – a commitment that we will see through the current economic situation,” he said. 

“Our aircraft orders of the narrow-body A320 family of aircraft, which are both modern and fuel efficient, will give us greater flexibility, operating on European, Asian and Middle East routes with deliveries beginning in November.”

Al Baker was speaking as Qatar Airways wrapped up its presence at the Paris Air Show, to where he had led a delegation of airline officials from head office in Doha. The carrier once again showcased its hospitality with a dedicated VIP chalet.

He said that the launch of Qatar Executive with three new Bombardier aircraft to be positioned in Doha, was a unique offering for the region’s corporate market as it was backed by a world-class, award-winning Five Star airline.

Two new Bombardier Challenger 605 aircraft, due to be delivered later this month, will be able to fly non-stop up to 4,000 nautical miles reaching destinations throughout Europe, Africa and Asia.

“The Middle East is underserved in the corporate aircraft segment, and by utilising the Five Star service of Qatar Airways as a model to build a new corporate jet venture is, I believe, the right way forward to capitalise on this key market segment,” explained Captain Ted Button, Senior Vice-President of Qatar Executive.

During the show, Qatar Airways officially rolled out its new Qbiz global travel rewards incentive programme for small- and medium-sized companies enabling both the company and individual traveller to benefit from membership by accruing and redeeming Privilege Club loyalty Qmiles during their travels.

Al Baker said that the airline aimed to support small and medium-sized companies through Qbiz, emphasised that the scheme was a win-win situation for all, as business trips would be twice as rewarding.

With route expansion very much part of the airline’s growth strategy, Al Baker said that the airline was looking forward to operating its first service to Australia and extending Qatar Airways’ reach to yet another continent with the launch of flights to Melbourne. 

“I know the travelling public is eager for us to begin serving Australia and I’ve had many people ask me about our direct routes to Melbourne and Sydney. Once we’ve received the necessary aircraft from Boeing, we will be ready to operate,” he said, adding that the Australian operation will begin in time for the busy holiday season Down Under.

On the expansion of the French operation, Qatar Airways Area Manager France Eric Didier said: “We are looking forward to begin operating twice-daily flights to Doha from October 25 as there is huge demand and many of our corporate clients, in particular, with interests in the Gulf region have been looking forward to increased convenience.

“This week at the Paris Air Show we’ve had numerous enquiries from the likes of Total, Renault, Dassault, American Express, French Telecom and others, all interested in our services from France to the Middle East and beyond – as well as renewing and developing partnerships with Qatar Airways. Double daily flights between Doha and Paris will give our customers more flexibility, more convenience and more choice.

“Qatar Airways has been delighted with this year’s show in Paris. Despite global concern about the current economic situation, we’ve had a very strong showing throughout the show and look forward to continued growth here in the French market and worldwide,” added Didier.

Qatar Airways currently operates a modern fleet of 68 Airbus and Boeing aircraft to 82 key business and leisure destinations across Europe, Middle East, Africa, South Asia, Far East and North America.

The airline will launch a further six new routes in the coming nine months, including Amritsar (October 11) and Goa (October 25) in India, Melbourne (December 6) and Sydney (date to be confirmed) in Australia, and a further two, as yet, unannounced routes in Europe.

Qatar Airways’ Economy Class has been voted Best in the World in the annual Skytrax passenger survey, in which more than 16 million travellers were polled. Ranked Five Star for service and excellence by Skytrax, the independent aviation industry monitoring agency also voted Qatar Airways’ cabin crew Best in the Middle East for the seventh year running in 2009 and Best Airline in the Middle East for the fourth consecutive year. For more information, log onto www.qatarairways.com

Qatar Airways will operate a fleet of 110 aircraft by 2013 – almost double the existing size. Qatar Airways has ordered 80 Airbus A350s, 24 Airbus A320 Family aircraft, 60 Boeing 787s and 32 Boeing 777s, with deliveries of the latter having started in November 2007. The airline is one of the customers of the twin-deck Airbus A380 ‘super jumbos’ with five on order and scheduled for delivery from 2012, by which time the New Doha International Airport is scheduled to open. For more information, visit www.ndiaproject.com

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

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