The COVID-19 pandemic has created unprecedented challenges for the global aviation industry. Qatar Airways has led the industry during these challenging times, becoming the largest airline in the world – over the past three months – to take people home safely and reliably on more flights to more destinations than any other airline.
These efforts have established the carrier as airline passengers, governments and industry partners can rely on and trust.
According to Qatar Airways Group Chief Executive HE Akbar Al Baker, more passengers have chosen to fly with Qatar Airways during this crisis than on any other airline.
We appreciate the trust they have placed in us. We have become the largest global carrier flying over 50 million kilometres to repatriate over 1.8 million passengers on over 15,000 flights. This has enabled us to accumulate unrivalled experience of how to safely and reliably carry passengers during these uncertain times.
Qatar Airways is a carrier that has been recognised as the World’s Best Airline on five occasions by Skytrax, built significant goodwill with governments and embassies as they assisted stranded citizens and most importantly, been available non-stop for stranded passengers during the pandemic.
We have been here 24/7 during the darkest days and will continue to be a friend in need as confidence returns and people restart their travel plans.
Passenger and Cargo Operations
While many airlines have been forced or chosen to suspend operations, Qatar Airways has maintained a robust and agile network helping to take over 1.8 million passengers home. The airline has also worked closely with governments, and companies around the world to operate over 220 charters and extra sector flights, helping reunite over 62,000 people with their loved ones. As the global recovery from COVID-19 begins, the airline recently announced plans to gradually rebuild its network in line with passenger demand evolution and the expected relaxation of entry restrictions around the world. By the end of June, the airline plans to expand its network to 80 destinations, subject to regulatory, approval with more to be added by the end of the Summer season.
To ensure travellers can plan their travel with peace of mind, the airline has extended its booking policies to offer even more choice to passengers. The airline will allow unlimited date changes, and passengers can change their destination as often as they need if within 5,000 miles of the original destination. For full terms and conditions, visit qatarairways.com/RelyOnUs.
The airline’s cargo division has significantly increased operations to support global trade and the transport of essential medical and aid supplies to impacted regions. Working closely with governments and NGOs around the globe, Qatar Airways Cargo has transported over 175,000 tonnes of medical and aid supplies to impacted regions, the equivalent of roughly 1,750 fully loaded Boeing 777 freighters.
Safeguarding Passengers and Staff
Qatar Airways has implemented several changes, including the introduction of Personal Protective Equipment (PPE) suits for cabin crew while onboard, as well as a modified service that reduces interactions between passengers and the crew inflight.
Cabin crew have already been wearing PPE suits during flights for a number of weeks, in addition to safety goggles, gloves and a mask to provide even greater reassurance to customers in addition to enhanced hygienic measures already in place. The airline now requires passengers to wear face coverings inflight and recommends people bring their own for fit and comfort purposes.
Passengers flying Business Class on Qsuite equipped aircraft can avail of the enhanced privacy, including sliding privacy partitions and fully closing doors that create a private sanctuary. Passengers can also opt to use the ‘Do Not Disturb’ indicator in their private suite, if they wish to limit their interactions with the cabin crew. Qsuite continues to be available on flights to more than 30 destinations with plans to add more routes throughout summer.
As an airline, Qatar Airways maintains the highest possible hygiene standards, with regular disinfection of aircraft, use of cleaning products recommended by the International Air Transport Association (IATA) and the World Health Organization (WHO), and thermal screening of crew.
In addition, Qatar Airways aircrafts feature the most advanced air filtration systems, equipped with industrial-size HEPA filters that remove 99.97% of viral and bacterial contaminants from re-circulated air, providing the most effective protection against infection.
Hamad International Airport
Hamad International Airport (HIA) is also robustly minimising any risks to the health and safety of passengers and staff. As a vital pillar to Qatar’s national economy, HIA’s doors remain open as it continues its operations to take people home, and ensure food security for the State of Qatar through air cargo.
HIA has implemented stringent cleaning procedures and closed most of the non-essential passenger facilities. The airport is implementing innovative solutions to maintain the highest levels of hygiene including the use of disinfection robots, advanced thermal temperature screening, and ultraviolet luggage disinfection.
All passenger touchpoints are sanitised every 10-15 minutes and every boarding gate and bus gate counter is cleaned after each flight. Staff working at the airport have been provided additional training in terms of protecting themselves and others in light of the current situation and implementing the highest health and safety measurements.
In addition, hand sanitisers are provided at immigration and security screening points. A social distancing policy has been implemented at the airport, and staff wear masks and disposable gloves to protect them from any infection. All staff are briefed to change their masks in line with WHO recommendations.
For updates and more information, visit qatarairways.com.