Qatar Airways is the first Middle East customer of the Boeing 787, with 60 aircraft on order, including options. The Doha-based airline is preparing to take delivery of five 787 aircraft during 2012, with the first few to arrive in Qatar this summer.
Qatar Airways will initially fly the aircraft on intra-Gulf routes to provide flight crew with training hours before its 787 goes on static display at the Farnborough Air Show in July. It will then enter into long-haul commercial service on the Doha – London Heathrow route.
“Just over four years ago, Qatar Airways placed an order for the 60 Dreamliners, so seeing these striking images of the aircraft on the production line gives us great pride as we are only months away from taking delivery of our first 787,” said Qatar Airways Chief Executive Officer Akbar Al Baker.
“This magnificent aircraft promises to enhance the travel experience for our passengers through space, comfort and many new interior features exclusive to Qatar Airways. We eagerly await the arrival of our first 787 to join our growing fleet of 105 aircraft that includes a mix of Boeing and Airbus passenger and cargo aircraft.”
Later this week at ITB Berlin – the world’s largest travel fair – Qatar Airways will unveil the interiors of its 787 on a newly-designed exhibition stand making its debut at the five-day event.
Qatar Airways currently has orders worth over US$50 billion for more than 250 aircraft, including Boeing 787 and 777 aircraft and A350, A380 and A320 Airbus aircraft.
The airline currently flies to 112 key business and leisure destinations across Europe, Middle East, Africa, Asia Pacific, North America and South America.
As part of its ongoing expansion programme, Qatar Airways launched flights to Baku (Azerbaijan) and Tbilisi (Georgia) via Baku on 1st February.
The carrier will launch flights to a further seven destinations this year – Kigali (Rwanda) from 21st March; Zagreb (Croatia) from 9th May; Perth (Australia) from 3rd July; with dates yet to be announced for other new routes – Mombasa (Kenya), Zanzibar (Tanzania), Helsinki (Finland), and Gassim (Saudi Arabia).