At a challenging time for the aviation industry, Qatar Airways has chosen to keep one-third of its fleet in the air.
In an interview with Bloomberg, the CEO of Qatar Airways, Akbar Al Baker told media that they still operate one-third of their routes. “We have a social responsibility and know that there are still many people who have to fly. This may be tourists who need to return home, employees at embassies, sailors and oil workers” said Al Baker to Bloomberg.
Around 150 aircraft fly daily to 70 destinations from Doha, which remains open to transit passengers. Unlike other rival airlines in the Middle East, such as Emirates and Ethiad, Qatar Airways has chosen to maintain a large proportion of its operations. Furthermore, the airline has taken some of its Airbus A380 back to service, which was previously temporarily grounded due to the pandemic. These are now back on routes such as London, Frankfurt and Paris, which all need the additional capacity.
It is still possible to fly with Qatar Airways from Scandinavian destinations such as Oslo, Copenhagen and Stockholm. The airline has implemented strict hygiene and cleanliness measures at the airport and onboard to ensure that travellers feel safe. Many passengers these days are cautious in planning future trips. To address this uncertainty, Qatar Airways has introduced flexible rules under the name «Travel With Confidence». The airline offers three different options for passengers that have an existing reservation, or places a new booking, for trips up to 30 September. It is possible to change the date of the ticket at no additional cost, cancel in exchange for a voucher with 10% higher value than the original ticket price or receive a full refund. Read more about the details here. “The aviation industry is experiencing very difficult times, and only the strongest
will survive” concludes Al Baker, who believes many airlines will not survive the pandemic.