• Joe Breitfeller

Qatar Airways Resumes Service to the Maldives, Remains Committed to Sustainable Operations

Qatar Airways announced on Wednesday the resumption of service to the Maldives, the first international carrier to resume service to the popular holiday destination. On Thursday, the carrier also reiterated their commitment to sustainable operations.


Qatar Airways Boeing 787 Dreamliner - Courtesy Boeing

Yesterday (July 15, 2020), Qatar Airways announced the resumption of flights to the Maldives. The first daily flight touched down at Velana International Airport on Wednesday morning and was greeted with a traditional water cannon salute. Qatar Airways is the first international carrier to relaunch service to the popular holiday destination. In addition to the Maldives, the carrier has already resumed flights to holiday favorites such as Athens, Kilimanjaro, Tunis and Zanzibar. Next week, Qatar Airways will also resume service to Antalya and Bodrum in Turkey. Additionally, the Greek Islands are accessible through the airline’s Athens gateway, with 11 weekly flights.


Qatar Airways' Flight Additions From July 15, 2020 - Courtesy Qatar Airways

Qatar Airways’ network has never fallen below 30 destinations throughout the crisis and by the end of July, the airline will offer over 450 weekly flights to more than 70 destinations as they continue to lead the airline industry recovery.


In a separate announcement on Thursday (July 16, 2020), Qatar Airways reaffirmed their commitment to sustainable operations as they rebuild their network. The carrier is currently operating their full fleet of 20 Boeing 787 Dreamliners and 49 Airbus A350s. Qatar Airways is the world’s largest operator of Airbus A350 Family aircraft and was the launch customer for both the A350-900 and A350-1000. T he airline’s 49 A350s have an average age of only 2.5 years and have been optimized with seating capacity to meet the current market environment. The carrier’s 30 Boeing 787 Dreamliners are well suited for deployment on European routes during the recovery, while the A350s provide the optimal capacity for strategic long-haul routes to the Americas, Europe, and the Asia-Pacific regions. Qatar Airways has temporarily grounded their fleet of 10 Airbus A380s for environmental and commercial reasons, as they are not suited for current market conditions and are less environmentally friendly than the airline’s A350s. In Thursday’s announcement, Qatar Airways Group’s Chief Executive, His Excellency Mr. Akbar Al Baker said,


"Qatar Airways Group has a strong record of industry leadership on sustainable operations. We take our responsibilities to care for the environment seriously and sustainability is at the forefront of our business planning across the group, this is why we have an average fleet age of less than five years, one of the youngest in the world. Thanks to our strategic and diversified investment in our fleet, the viability of our operations has not been dependent on any specific aircraft type. This has enabled us to be one of the few global airlines to never stop operating during the crisis, carrying over two million passengers and in the process of becoming the largest international airline in the world. Our fleet mix has enabled us to continue operating routes throughout the crisis ensuring we do not leave passengers stranded.


“As we rebuild our network, passengers can rely on us to operate and honest schedule of flights to take them where they want to go, using the right size aircraft to offer sensible capacity on each route. As a result, we will not resume flying our fleet of A380 until demand returns to the appropriate levels. Having closely studied the environmental impact numbers, flying such a large aircraft with a low load factor does not meet our environmental responsibilities or make commercial sense. Our young fleet of Airbus A350 and Boeing 787 aircraft are a much better fit for current global demand.”


Qatar Airways has enhanced onboard safety measures for guests and crew including Personal Protective Equipment (PPE) for cabin crew including masks, gloves, safety glasses and a new protective gown. The carrier has also implemented a modified meal service designed to limit contact. Passengers are also required to wear facemasks inflight, and the carrier recommends travelers bring their own for personalized fit and comfort. The airline has also introduced protective face shields which will be distributed at the check-in counters at Hamad International Airport. Guests boarding from other locations will receive their face shield at the boarding gate. Qatar Airways’ guests will receive a complimentary protective kit onboard which includes a single-use surgical mask, large disposable powder-free gloves and an alcohol-based hand sanitizer gel. Additionally, Qatar Airways now allows unlimited date changes for tickets (within 5,000 miles of the original destination) for travel completed before December 31, 2020, without any fare difference charges.


Business Class Guests traveling in Qatar Airways’ award-winning Qsuite will enjoy a private sanctuary with sliding privacy partitions and fully closing doors. Customers can also use the ‘Do Not Disturb’ (DND) indicator in their private suite to limit crew interactions. Qsuite is currently available on flights to over 30 destinations including London, Sydney, Singapore and Dallas-Fort Worth and will be added to more routes throughout the summer.


Celebrated and award-winning Qatar Airways was named the ‘World’s Best Airline’ in the 2019 World Airline Awards managed by Skytrax. The carrier was also named ‘Best Airline in the Middle East,’ ‘World’s Best Business Class’ and awarded the title for ‘Best Business Class Seat.’ Qatar Airways is the only airline ever to have received the prestigious “Skytrax Airline of the Year” title five times. The national carrier of the State of Qatar, Qatar Airways normally serves over 170 global destinations with a fleet of more than 250 modern aircraft. The airline’s primary hub is located at Hamad International Airport (DOH) in Doha, Qatar.


Source: Qatar Airways

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