Category Archives: Aviation

Qatar adds Seychelles to its network

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Qatar Airways has rounded off its 2016 global route expansion on a high note with the launch of daily flights to the idyllic islands of the Seychelles – the 14th new destination on the airline’s route map this year and the third in Africa. The destination comprises 115 tropical islands in the western Indian Ocean, located off the east coast of Africa. Its airport is located on the island of Mahé near the city of Victoria, the capital of the Seychelles. Visitors can experience the Vallée de Mai Nature Preserve on the island of Praslin, a UNESCO World Heritage Site, the Seychelles National Botanical Gardens on Mahé, or, of course, enjoy the white sand beaches the islands are known for. The Seychelles is key to Qatar Airways’ global network expansion strategy and its continuing growth in Africa. The airline currently operates to 23 African gateways, including the recently launched service to the Namibian capital of Windhoek, which joined the airline’s route map in September 2016. The Doha to Seychelles flight schedule offers an attractive 08:50 morning arrival and 19:25 evening departure so travellers can take full advantage of their time on the islands. Passengers planning a getaway to the Seychelles are encouraged to plan a stopover in Doha, with a new transit visa scheme offering visitors a free transit visa for up to 96 hours on your way to or from your final destination.

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Emergency exercise at Abu Dhabi International Airport on Dec 14

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Abu Dhabi Airports will conduct a full scale emergency exercise at Abu Dhabi International Airport on December 14, 2016. The exercise is expected to run for approximately two hours from 4:00 pm – 6:00 pm. During this time, Abu Dhabi International Airport will continue to operate as normal. The exercise is being conducted in accordance with Civil Aviation Regulations issued by the General Civil Aviation Authority, and in compliance with standards and recommendations as stipulated by the International Civil Aviation Organization. Response teams from various units including airport operations, security, fire and rescue, police, and medical services, will test their coordinated response to an emergency situation.

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Emirates adds festive cheer with special Christmas offering

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Emirates has ramped up its product offering both on board and on the ground in view of the upcoming festive season. A new Christmas menu has been introduced for the first time across all cabin classes featuring traditional festive meals. The special menu will be in addition to the wide variety of cuisine available on board and features holiday favourites such as roast turkey and yule log cakes. These Christmas meals are available for customers travelling from Dubai to Australia, Europe, the United States or the United Kingdom and will be served throughout December. The festive offering reflects Emirates’ commitment to providing regional and seasonal menus using fresh ingredients of the highest quality across its network. As a special treat, First Class Customers, can look out for luxury hot chocolate handmade with 100% Valrhona Chocolate and blended to perfection by chocolatier David Franco. Emirates has also pulled out all the stops to ensure young flyers get the most of their holiday travel experience. A special kid’s festive menu is available for the second year with roast turkey, sweet potato mash, carrots and peas, as well as a candy cane and Emirates’ Little Travellers chocolate buttons as an added treat.

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Emirates lands in Doha with world’s shortest A380 flight

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Emirates launched the world’s shortest scheduled A380 service, flying a distance of 379 kilometres with a total travel time of 1 hour and 20 minutes from Dubai to Doha, and 1 hour 10 minutes on the return journey. Outbound flight EK 841 departs Dubai at 0745hrs, arriving in Doha at 0805hrs. The return flight, EK 842, departs Doha at 0950hrs, arriving in Dubai at 1200hrs. The timing of the A380 service means customers from Doha flying to popular destinations like New York, London Heathrow, Frankfurt, Manchester, Dusseldorf, Milan, Paris, Rome and Amsterdam, can now enjoy a seamless A380 experience and also have a wider choice of “all A380” flight itineraries for their journeys. Emirates has steadily grown its presence in Doha and now operates with nine daily flights, making it the most served destination in the airline’s network. Demand between Dubai and Doha is strong, and in the last five years Emirates has carried over 3.7 million passengers between the two cities. The Emirates A380 serving Doha operates in a three-class configuration, with 429 generously pitched seats in Economy Class on the main deck, 76 flat-bed seats in Business Class and 14 First Class Private Suites on the upper deck. Passengers in all classes can enjoy Emirates’ exceptional hospitality as well as its multi-awarded Ice Digital Widescreen in-flight entertainment system with a choice of over 2,500 channels on-demand, including a wide selection of Arabic programming. The double-decker A380 is the world’s largest commercial aircraft in service, and has been tremendously popular with travellers across the globe with its spacious cabins and quiet journeys. Emirates is the largest operator of this aircraft and currently has 87 A380s in service and 55 …

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Qatar Airways partners with UnionPay

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Qatar Airways will now accept UnionPay credit and debit cards through its website for ticket and other sales, expanding payment options for customers around the world. With more than 5.8 billion cards issued globally, UnionPay is an international bankcard network and is the preferred method of payment for the Chinese market. The option to pay with UnionPay cards provides Qatar Airways travellers with a high quality and secure payment service worldwide, and is accepted in 160 countries and regions. Qatar Airways customers can now conveniently book via the airline’s website in currencies including Chinese yuan, Great British pound, euro, US dollar, Australian dollar, Hong Kong dollar, Japanese yen, South Korean won, Malaysian ringgit, New Zealand dollar, Singapore dollar and Thai baht using their UnionPay cards. The option to pay with UnionPay cards provides Qatar Airways travellers with a high quality and secure payment service worldwide. Customers across the globe can book Qatar Airways tickets using their UnionPay cards by selecting the UnionPay logo on the payment page. Customers will be re-directed to UPI’s website to fill out their payment credentials, with a successful completion of the payment resulting in a Qatar Airways’ confirmation page and booking reference number. Qatar Airways also recently launched Apple Pay; becoming the first Gulf carrier to offer the revolutionary ‘mobile wallet’ solution across the full list of countries where Apple Pay is available. Available on any iOS device, Apple Pay allows customers to conveniently and securely book their next journey on Qatar Airways with the tap or touch of a finger. Using passcode or finger-print technology, Apple Pay links directly to the subscribers’ nominated debit or credit cards, adding to yet another safe and secure …

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Krabi welcomes Qatar Airways

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The coastal gateway of Krabi, Thailand, welcomed the inaugural Qatar Airways flight to arrive at its international airport from Doha, Qatar. The Airbus A330-200 was greeted by a water salute to usher in the new four times weekly service to Southern Thailand’s west coast. On board the inaugural flight was Qatar Airways Senior Vice President of Asia Pacific, Marwan Koleilat, and Thailand’s Ambassador to Qatar, His Excellency Soonthorn Chaiyindeepum. With the launch of this new service Qatar Airways has become the first Middle Eastern airline to provide scheduled services to Krabi, providing fast and convenient access to one of the world’s most popular tourism regions. Travellers can now enjoy year-round services to the incredible islands of Phi Phi National Park, while also enjoying other cultural experiences in the Southern Thai province famous for stunning land and seascapes, world-class diving, national parks and eco-tours.

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Qatar adds 7 more destinations for 2017/18

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Qatar Airways has announced eight more destinations for 2017-18, in addition to seven previously announced new cities for a total of 15 new gateways. Joining the Qatar Airways’ route network are: Canberra, the airline’s fifth destination in Australia; Dublin, Ireland; Las Vegas, the airline’s 11th destination in the United States; Rio de Janeiro, Brazil; Santiago, Chile; Medan, Kualanamu International Airport, the airline’s third destination in Indonesia; and Tabuk and Yanbu, the 9th and 10th destinations in Saudi Arabia. These newly-announced destinations join the already-announced list of new destinations to start in 2017: Auckland, New Zealand will start 5 February 2017, and will be the world’s longest commercial flight; Sarajevo, Bosnia; Skopje, Macedonia; Libreville, Gabon; Nice, France; Chiang Mai, the airline’s fourth destination in Thailand; and Douala, Cameroon. Qatar Airways Group Chief Executive, His Excellency Mr. Akbar Al Baker said: “Qatar Airways offers the world the best network, the best on board experience and the best connecting experience at Hamad International Airport. We operate the world’s youngest fleet, averaging just five years old, and we fly the most technologically advanced aircraft that provide our passengers with an award-winning experience while also ensuring the most efficient and environmentally friendly operations. Our intention is to ensure our passengers can choose Qatar Airways for all of their travel needs – whether they are flying on business, for pleasure, or a combination of both. With today’s network announcement, we will be able to connect more people to more places than any other Gulf airline, and we will ensure our passengers will delight in the journey. At Qatar Airways, we are going places together with our passengers, and we look forward to welcoming these new destinations …

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Ras Al Khaimah Civil Aviation marks National Day

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Ras Al Khaimah’s Department of Civil Aviation (RAKDCA) held a celebratory event with great pomp and show to celebrate the 45th National Day of the UAE at the Civil Aviation Department premises. Presided over by His Excellency Engr. Sheikh Salem Bin Sultan Bin Saqr Al Qasimi, Chairman, Department of Civil Aviation, Ras Al Khaimah, the event was graced by top officials from the Civil Aviation Department, Airport, Police, Immigration, Customs, National Security, aviation industry and National carriers like Air Arabia and Qatar Airways. The celebratory event remembered with respect the great leadership and vision of the founding father of the nation His Highness Sheikh Zayed bin Sultan Al Nahyan. The event also thanked His Highness Sheikh Khalifa bin Zayed Al Nahyan, President of the UAE, His Highness Sheikh Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum,  Vice President and Prime Minister of the UAE and Ruler of Dubai, for following the vision of the founding father and guiding the country to prosperity. The participants thanked His Highness Sheikh Saud bin Saqr Al Qasimi, UAE Supreme Council Member and Ruler of Ras Al Khaimah,  for the visionary leadership and support to the aviation sector. In order to pay respects to the Martyrs,  a band was played by the students of Al Bustan School, followed by 40-minute audiovisual show highlighting the progress of the country and the dedication and sacrifice of the martyrs, and a march past by the Military School, which evoked patriotism among the spectators. The school children performed an entertaining ayala (traditional local dance), which was enjoyed by all. The event ended with honouring senior employees and long-serving staff as well as outstanding employees.

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Qatar Airways launches digital privilege membership card

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Qatar Airways has launched a digital membership card for its Privilege Club members, providing them with an option to redeem Qmiles when travelling across the airline’s global network. Available to all Privilege Club membership tiers — Burgundy, Silver, Gold and Platinum — the new digital membership card provides travellers with the same level of service as the physical card using their smartphones or tablets. Members can continue earning and redeeming Qmiles on products and services, priority check-in, extra baggage allowance, special discounts at Qatar Duty Free, accessing Qatar Airways’ lounges and using partner airline services, award fee waivers for Gold and Platinum members, Flexi Awards and online redemption discounts. Travellers can now present their membership card on a smartphone or tablet via the Qatar Airways App, mobile website, Apple Wallet, email or as a saved image on a portable device. The digital membership card will now supersede the physical card for all new Burgundy Privilege Club members and their nominated family members, providing them with immediate access to the many benefits of the Privilege Club programme.

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Air Canada taps new markets in the Middle East

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Air Canada is expanding its reach within the Middle East and aims to tap new markets such as Kuwait, Qatar, Saudi Arabia and Oman. The only four star international network carrier in North America, Air Canada celebrated one year of their operations in Dubai recently in the presence of Margaret Skinner, Director Sales EMEAI, Air Canada. Skinner says that the Dreamliner is a game changer for them, but now they have upgraded it to a Boeing 777 for the convenience of the passengers travelling from Dubai – Toronto route and vice versa. Deepu Cyriac, Country Manager for UAE/GCC, Air Canada, stated that they recently opened BSP in Kuwait. They are further expanding their services to have SPA partnerships with Qatar Airways, Kuwait Airways, Oman Air and Saudi Arabian Airline to travel via Dubai and London to more destinations in Canada. This flexibility has seen a very good growth from the region. They are currently serving a very good mix of markets around the region.

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