Ten years already as ‘time flies 5star’ …


(Posted 09th June 2015)

Ten years in business can be a long time and yet, in this case, it rather is one of time flies, when Qatar Airways this week celebrated their tenth anniversary of launching flights from Doha to South Africa.

Initially serving the country’s commercial capital of Johannesburg were services eventually expanded to include Cape Town, and the two cities are presently served 10 times and 3 times a week respectively.

The celebrations in both Johannesburg and Cape Town, of a decade of Qatar Airways’ presence, however also served as a platform for the airline’s COO Mr. Marwan Koleilat, to announce that flights to Cape Town would be upped from three to seven, i.e. commencing a daily service, while Johannesburg would go to a full doubly daily service from October 01st and December 17th respectively. In addition will, also on the 17th of December, flights to Durban be launched, with this Indian Ocean port city then served four times a week via Johannesburg.

While focusing on a broad expansion of services into Africa, a continent described by the airline’s Group CEO Mr. Akbar Al Baker as ‘underserved’ is Qatar Airways already flying to now 6 destinations in East Africa, Entebbe combined with Kigali on daily basis, Kilimanjaro, Dar es Salaam and Zanzibar in Tanzania and Nairobi in Kenya. Mombasa, a city the airline has shown a keen interest in for several years now, remains off the list of destinations inspite of desperate pleas by the Kenya coast tourism fraternity as a result of the Kenya Civil Aviation stubbornly refusing to find ways and means to accommodate Qatar Airways’ need to combine the route, including having traffic rights, until Mombasa can generate enough traffic for nonstop flights.

As Qatar Airways takes delivery of more aircraft, the fleet now stands at 158 aircraft with more than 330 additional planes on order to boost the fleet and replace ageing aircraft, are there expressed plans to increase destinations across Africa, raise the number of frequencies and switch from the Airbus A320 used on many routes to a wide body jet. Much to look forward to and all the more a reason to watch this space for breaking and regular news updates.