Qatar Airways has launched flights between Doha
and Melbourne. The new route signals the beginning of Qatar
Airways’ operations to Australia, and adds another continent to
the airline’s rapidly expanding global network. Melbourne becomes
the airline’s 85th destination and fourth new route of 2009. The
carrier plans to launch flights to Sydney next year.
Qatar Airways is operating its
newest aircraft – a Boeing 777-200LR delivered less than four
weeks ago – on the route, flying initially three-times-a-week on
Sundays, Wednesdays and Fridays. The Doha-based airline
takes delivery of another Boeing 777-200 Long Range aircraft
direct from Boeing’s Seattle manufacturing base this month and
will use the aircraft on the Melbourne route, stepping up
frequency to daily from 1 January 2010.
The launch of flights to Melbourne
ahead of the busy holiday season ends a year of further growth for
the airline, which also launched services to Houston and both
Amritsar and Goa in India during 2009.
Qatar Airways’ Chief Executive Officer, Mr Akbar
Al Baker said that Qatar Airways was looking forward to establishing
a strong foothold in the Australian market, aiming to do so with
the quickest scheduled flight times between Melbourne and London,
its biggest market. At 21 hours, 40 minutes, including a short
transit in Doha, Qatar Airways will offer Melbournians a new way of travelling to the UK.
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