Despite the significant challenges the pandemic has caused international aviation, our industry has continued to be a leader in adopting new technologies and innovations to ensure a safe, secure and seamless travel experience for our passengers. Qatar Airways is proud to lead the way by becoming the first airline to trial COVID-19 vaccine authentication through the IATA Travel Pass ‘Digital Passport’ Mobile App. I want to especially thank Qatar’s Ministry of Public Health, Ministry of Interior, Primary Health Care Corporation and Hamad Medical Corporation, whom without their ongoing support, this trial would not be possible.
We know as more people begin making plans to return to their favourite holiday destinations, they will inevitably face the challenge of ensuring they have the right paperwork. Through trialling and supporting the development of new technologies, we aim to provide travellers with a tool that will support them to seamlessly travel across borders with greater confidence.
Qatar Airways and the Qatari Government are showing leadership by becoming the first to trial the verification of passengers’ vaccine credentials through IATA Travel Pass. Certificates of COVID-19 vaccination or testing status will be key to restoring people’s freedom to travel. Trials by Qatar Airways and some 70 other airlines have demonstrated that IATA Travel Pass can efficiently manage test results. This important new trial focusing on vaccination status will build even more confidence in IATA Travel Pass as a complete solution for travellers, governments and airlines.
With the resumption of flights to Phuket, Qatar Airways marks a significant milestone in the recovery of international tourism. We have led the industry, setting the benchmark for safety, innovation and customer service throughout the pandemic. We know many of our customers are eager to get back flying and return to some of their favourite holiday destinations, such as Phuket. Famed for its many exotic beaches, family friendly atmosphere, turquoise waters and delicious local cuisine, Phuket is an ideal destination for a summer getaway. We look forward to working with our partners in Thailand to support the recovery of their tourism sector.
It is extremely encouraging to see world-leading carriers like Qatar Airways returning to Phuket the very moment the destination reopens, and doing so with confidence as can be seen in the schedule of multiple weekly flights. It’s a wonderful indication of Phuket’s endearing popularity with international tourists, who are obviously keen to once again enjoy the island’s legendary beaches and welcoming hospitality.
It is our ambition as an airline to minimise our impact on the environment, and facilitate continued global travel and commerce while limiting carbon emissions. As we work in collaboration with the aviation industry to reconnect the world, we recognise sustainability as a strategy to build resilience post COVID-19. We must act boldly and decisively to make necessary changes, acknowledging that it is innovation which will drive the industry forward for a sustainable future.
With the resumption of flights to Phuket, Qatar Airways marks a significant milestone in the recovery of international tourism. We are proud to have lead the industry, setting the benchmark for safety, innovation and customer service throughout the pandemic. We know many of our customers are eager to get back flying and return to some of their favourite holiday destinations, such as Phuket. Famed for its many exotic beaches, family friendly atmosphere, turquoise waters and delicious local cuisine, Phuket is an ideal destination for a summer getaway. We look forward to working with our partners in Thailand to support the recovery of their tourism sector.
The State of Qatar has a long and special relationship with India, and we have watched with great sorrow as COVID-19 has once again caused a significant challenge to the country.
As one of the world air cargo leaders, with an extensive international network, we stand ready to provide humanitarian support by transporting these much-needed supplies, and help the country fight back against this appalling virus. Qatar Airways Cargo has already transported well over 20 million doses of the COVID-19 vaccine for UNICEF as part of the five-year MoU to support UNICEF’s Humanitarian Airfreight Initiative.
Today’s special flight demonstrates the next stage in the recovery of international travel is not far away. We are proud to continue leading the industry by operating the first flight with a fully vaccinated crew and passengers and providing a beacon of hope for the future of international aviation. With aviation being a critical economic driver both globally and here in the State of Qatar, we are thankful for the support we have received from our government and local health authorities to vaccinate our staff, with over 1,000 vaccinations being administered per day.
It is in Qatar Airways DNA to be at the forefront, setting the highest standards of safety and customer service. Before the pandemic, Qatar Airways became the first and only airline to be awarded the Skytrax Airline of the Year five times. When the pandemic hit its peak in early April, our airline continued flying to help repatriate millions of stranded passengers and transport essential medical supplies, while also implementing the latest innovations in biosafety and hygiene. As the vaccine rollout begins to gather pace worldwide, Qatar Airways remains committed to being the airline passengers and travel partners can rely on, operating one of the largest global networks to provide the connectivity needed to reunite families and friends and support global trade.
Qatar Airways Cargo has also played a vital role in maintaining a reliable schedule across our network of destinations. Since the onset of the pandemic, Qatar Airways has helped transport more than 500,000 tonnes of medical supplies and delivered close to 20,000,000 doses of COVID-19 vaccines to over 20 countries.
Qatar Airways on-board experience remains the cornerstone of the airline’s world renowned five-star service. Despite the many challenges faced by the industry as a result of the COVID-19 pandemic, we continue to be passionate about achieving the highest standards of safety and excellence in everything we do.Our partnership with PressReader not only offers a COVID-safe, contactless entertainment option to further enhance our passenger’s on-board experience, it also supports our commitment to environmental sustainability, which continues to be a key focus for the airline.
We are delighted to be able to offer Qatar Airways passengers the convenience of accessing thousands of top name global magazine and newspaper titles in one safe, contactless and seamless digital experience without ever leaving the Oryx One app. In addition to this, by working together with PressReader, we have found the perfect digital solution to eliminate newspaper and magazine waste on the ground and in-flight by more than 1,000 tonnes each year.
We are honoured to be chosen by Qatar Airways to bring quality journalism and a superior reading experience to its customers in a 100 per cent contactless way – pre, during and post-flight.
As the world’s leading airline for safety, innovation and customer experience, we are the industry’s firmest advocate for introducing digital solutions to help passengers safely and seamlessly navigate complex and ever-changing entry restrictions across the globe. We have confidence in the credibility of the IATA Travel Pass as the industry’s most reliable and innovative solution given its strong data privacy compliance, long-standing entry rules engine and ability to provide an end-to-end solution. We are proud to be at the forefront of trialling this platform, being one of the first globally and the first airline in the Middle East to trial the technology. With the strictest data privacy regulations, IATA Travel Pass is a huge step towards proving that ICAO’s global standards for digital passports do work. It will also assist in laying the foundation for governments across the world to come together in the development of standardised regulations to reduce the current patchwork of red tape across the international travel industry. In partnership with the World Health Organisation, IATA is also engaged in helping to define a standardised vaccine certificate that will be necessary for the opening of borders and scalable increase of global travel.
Qatar Airways’ full deployment of IATA Travel Pass is a significant milestone in restarting global connectivity. Governments are requiring testing or vaccination certifications to enable travel and the IATA travel app helps travellers to securely and conveniently manage and provide their credentials. All passengers using IATA Travel Pass can be confident that their data is protected and governments can trust that the “OK to travel” means both a genuine credential and a verified identity.
Qatar Airways is pleased to partner with UEFA to connect players, fans and officials across the globe through our world-class service. The power of sport to unite people is unrivalled, and this partnership with UEFA EURO 2020™ is an excellent opportunity for us to witness the very best in European football. Furthermore, this alliance illustrates our commitment to Europe, and accentuates our growing sporting partnership portfolio.
We are delighted to welcome Qatar Airways on board as an Official Partner of UEFA EURO 2020™. Like sport, travel unites us. Now more than ever, next summer represents the ideal opportunity for us to celebrate the excitement that the competition will bring.
We congratulate Qatar Airways on being awarded with the highest 5-Star COVID-19 Safety Rating and being the world’s first major airline to be certified at this level. Qatar Airways kept flying throughout COVID-19, taking over 3.1 million people home since the start of the pandemic, and it is this experience that enables them to deliver an excellent standard of health and hygiene safety measures to keep customers and staff safe.
As an industry leader and the ‘World’s Best Airline’, as named by Skytrax, we are well-used to setting the standard for others to follow. We are delighted that our commitment to providing the most rigorous and comprehensive COVID-19 safety programme in existence within the global aviation community has been recognised with the Skytrax 5-Star COVID-19 Airline Safety Rating.
This achievement highlights the fastidious measures and procedures Qatar Airways have employed to safeguard the health and wellbeing of our passengers throughout the global pandemic to date, and follows HIA’s recent success as the first airport in the Middle East and Asia to be awarded a Skytrax 5-Star COVID-19 Airport Safety Rating. It also provides assurance to passengers across the world that airline health and safety standards are subject to the highest possible standards of professional, independent scrutiny and assessment. As Qatar Airways continues to deal with the ongoing impact and challenges of the COVID-19 crisis, we would like to reinforce the message that air travel does not need to be a source of concern to passengers. In the meantime, we look forward to continuing to provide the safest possible experience for travellers across the world, and expanding upon our role in assisting the recovery of the commercial aviation industry over the coming months.
Throughout 2020, we have provided customers the ability to modify travel without penalties as a result of the the disruption to global travel caused by COVID-19. As we look forward to the possibilities of travelling again next year, Qatar Airways will continue to be by our passengers’ side, offering continued flexibility throughout 2021 as the airline they can rely on.
As travel restrictions ease, we are starting to see the initial green shoots of the recovery of international leisure travel. Just as it was our priority to keep flying during the early months of this year to help take people home, it is equally as important to us now to provide more flexible options to passengers and agents to plan travel for the upcoming winter break. This is why we are increasing capacity to many key holiday destinations such as Cape Town, Maldives, Seychelles, and Zanzibar. With over 700 weekly flights to more than 100 destinations across the globe and hundreds of onwards connections through our partners, passengers can rely on Qatar Airways to offer them more flexible options to travel where they want to, whenever they want.
We are tremendously excited to celebrate our partnership with FIFA and Qatar’s status as host of the FIFA World Cup Qatar 2022TM by introducing this unique aircraft to our fleet. As Official Partner and Official Airline of FIFA, we can feel the excitement building with two years to go until we will welcome the world to our beautiful country.
“Qatar’s readiness to host FIFA World Cup Qatar 2022TM is evident all around us. At Qatar Airways, our network recently expanded to 100 destinations, and will further grow to more than 125 destinations by March 2021, with an increasing frequency enabling our passengers to travel when they want across the globe, safely and reliably. At Hamad International Airport, Official Airport Partner for the FIFA World Cup Qatar 2022TM, preparations for the expected traffic growth are well underway. The airport expansion project will increase capacity to more than 58 million passengers annually by 2022.
Qatar Airways is proud to continue its journey supporting FIFA tournaments and with FIFA World Cup Qatar 2022TM now just two years away, we are especially excited to reveal this beautiful aircraft.
As we approach the two years until kick-off milestone on 21 November, it’s great to see other key tournament delivery partners such as Qatar Airways achieve their own important Qatar 2022 objectives. Seeing the FIFA World Cup Qatar 2022TM brand covering an entire aircraft is an exciting moment for everyone involved in delivering this historic tournament and an important promotional step on our road to 2022. We hope this reveal helps excite fans at the prospect of flying here on one of these aircraft in just two years’ time for the first FIFA World Cup in the Middle East and Arab World and we look forward to welcoming everyone that arrives in Qatar.
Our Official Partner Qatar Airways launching this striking, iconic aircraft featuring the FIFA World Cup Qatar 2022™ livery is an important milestone. We are looking forward to welcoming fans from around the globe to experience this unique FIFA World Cup™ and discover Qatar in two years’ time.
“These latest statistics are a clear indication that, with the adoption of the right measures such as meticulous on-board safety, hygiene and social distancing procedures in place at airports, and compliance with the testing and entry requirements of local authorities, air travel does not need to be a source of concern to passengers.
“From the onset of the COVID-19 pandemic, we have introduced the most rigorous and stringent virus monitoring, detection and on-board hygiene programme in existence within the global aviation community. As an industry, we want to ensure the recovery of commercial aviation by encouraging passengers to feel confident that they are safe and protected, from departure to arrival, with all airlines.
“Our risk-based approach has seen us adopt a number of additional measures such as the introduction of PCR testing for passengers departing from ‘high risk’ countries, and the use of the most advanced HEPA air filtration systems on board our aircraft, wherever possible. This is in addition to the recent introduction of Honeywell’s Ultraviolet Cabin System, operated by Qatar Aviation Services, as an additional step in the cleaning of our aircraft and yet more evidence of Qatar Airways commitment to enhancing its safety practices. We have also done everything possible to protect our crew and employees from exposure to infection, with specialist onboard infection prevention training and the introduction of full PPE in-flight uniform in May completely eradicating this risk to date.
“As a result of these important measures we are able to report that 99.988 per cent of the more than 4.6 million passenger flown sectors operated have been COVID-19-free on board our aircraft since February 2020. In addition, significantly less than one per cent of Qatar Airways’ more than 37,000 flights have been confirmed to have carried an infected passenger. Given the extremely low numbers of cases travelling on flights and the even lower risk of transmission, with a recent IATA study finding 1 in 27 million travellers had contracted COVID-19 on board a flight, passengers can travel with peace of mind with the knowledge that flying continues to be the safest form of travel.
“Whilst these numbers may be low, we will continue to fastidiously monitor global developments in the fight to control the spread of COVID-19, as well as work closely with local health authorities to support with tracing activities whenever a positive case is confirmed and they have travelled with us within the time range of the incubation period. As an industry, we must remain vigilant and avoid any complacency, but ensure that we have strong safety and security procedures in place to instill confidence in passengers and provide reassurance, whether they are travelling home, visiting friends and family, or taking a leisure trip.”
During these challenging times, it is essential for nations to provide platforms where entrepreneurs can realise innovative ideas that align with the current necessities of the worldwide market. As a company that is moulded strongly by tourism, we are determined to play our role in supporting the UNWTO through this competition, upholding sustainability and innovation at the heart of the global economic recovery. We look forward to welcoming these bright minds to Doha, with the anticipation that they can accelerate their vision toward a sustainable future.
We are committed to strengthening our long-standing partnership with both Qatar Airways and the Qatar National Tourism Council. Thank you for supporting this competition, the Sustainable Development Goals and those entrepreneurs setting out to making tourism safer, more responsible and more sustainable. While the COVID-19 pandemic has taken an unprecedented toll on tourism, it also has made clear the important role tourism plays in every part of society. We commend the dedication of Qatar Airways to continuing to carry passengers safely throughout this time, and in the new reality that awaits us all.
We at Qatar Airways are incredibly grateful for the commitment and hard work of teaching professionals around the world who continue to educate our young people in these times of uncertainty. We know that it has not been an easy task, yet teachers have been incredibly resourceful, turning to online learning and other methods.
As the largest airline flying consistently throughout the pandemic, we have also supported students in recent weeks by flying to wherever they need to be to start their studies on charter as well as scheduled flights. As an airline, we firmly believe in the importance of education and are committed to lending our support to educational causes.
We are pleased to be the first global airline to operate the Honeywell UV Cabin System onboard our aircraft. In clinical tests, UV light has been shown to be capable of inactivating various viruses and bacteria when properly applied at specified doses.
During these unprecedented times, the health and safety of our crew and passengers continues to be of the utmost importance. Since the start of the pandemic, we have been regularly introducing new and effective safety and hygiene measures onboard our aircraft, based on our unparalleled expertise of flying consistently throughout.
Honeywell has technology today that can make air travel safer – from the traveller to the airport worker, throughout the airport and onboard the aircraft. We’re working across business lines to develop new products such as Honeywell ThermoRebellion, a new temperature-monitoring solution - Environmental Control System Check, which allows airlines to monitor air flow in the cabin, and an array of Personal Protective Equipment. All this allows for cleaner and safer airports.
During these challenging times Qatar Airways continues to lead and innovate, providing our passengers with the five-star experience they have come to expect from the World’s Best Airline. We are delighted to bring high-speed broadband connectivity to all our loyal passengers for the duration of their flights, from departure to arrival.
Not only does this showcase the exceptional five-star Qatar Airways service at a time when other airlines are using the current market challenges as a reason to reduce their Wi-Fi offerings.
It also proves that our mission to connect people around the world does not start and end with just travel. We understand the importance, especially in recent months, of enabling people to be connected at all times, whether on-the-ground or 35,000ft in-the-air.
We are proud to be the leading global airline connecting passengers with the world, helping take people safely and sustainably to where they need to be. Having one of the youngest, most fuel-efficient fleets enables us to be agile and respond quickly to passenger demand. Our focus throughout the rebuild of our network is not only on restarting destinations but also operating as many frequencies as possible to provide our passengers the flexibility to travel when they want.
By continuing to fly during the pandemic while others stopped, we have gained the trust of passengers as an airline they can rely on. We have taken more international passengers home than any other airline during this pandemic and as entry restrictions ease, we remain focused on our fundamental mission of carrying passengers across the globe safely and reliably. There are still millions of people who have not been able to be reunited with their friends and families and it is heartwarming to know our growing network will provide them an opportunity to travel home or take a trip to see loved ones.
As a leader of innovation within the global aviation industry, Qatar Airways already operates one of the youngest and most technologically-advanced fleet in the skies. Where other airlines are reducing their wi-fi offering, Qatar Airways is expanding it.
With connection to our loved ones and friends now more important than ever during these challenging times, we are delighted to work with Inmarsat and its GX Aviation technology to bring high-speed Super Wi-Fi broadband to passengers on board our fleet as part of Qatar Airways’ exceptional five-star service. We are also pleased to extend full-flight Super Wi-Fi connectivity to our loyal Privilege Club members across the globe.
Qatar Airways is world renowned for offering a superior onboard experience, which is enjoyed by millions of loyal passengers across the world. We are pleased that our GX Aviation inflight broadband has become such an important component of that experience on the airline’s extensive fleet. Feedback from passengers has been hugely positive and now, with the service being available on 100 aircraft, even more can enjoy the best connectivity in the skies.
We are proud to be the leading global airline connecting passengers with the world, operating one of the youngest, most fuel-efficient and sustainable fleets to take people safely to where they need to be. The gradual rebuilding of our network has been focused on strengthening connections between our hub in Doha and key gateways around the world as well as major business and leisure destinations. The resumption of flights to Philadelphia will provide seamless connections via our U.S. partners to several key domestic points such as Atlanta, Detroit and Miami. Similarly, the increase in frequencies to Djibouti, Ho Chi Minh City, London and New York will provide further air freight capacity to these important trade and economic centres.
The recovery of international travel will take time but returning to over 50 per cent of our pre-COVID-19 network is a significant milestone. Restoring passenger confidence is key, and we are proud to lead the industry by offering one of the most flexible and generous booking policies that enables customers to plan their travel with confidence. By continuing to fly during the pandemic while others stopped, we have gained the trust of passengers as an airline they can rely on. We have taken more international passengers home than any other airline during this pandemic and as entry restrictions ease and we resume more of our pre-COVID-19 network, we remain focused on our fundamental mission of carrying passengers across the globe safely and reliably. There are still millions of people who have not seen their friends and families for months and our growing network allows them to travel home or take a trip to see loved ones. With a young fleet of fuel efficient aircraft such as the Airbus A350 and Boeing 787 operating the majority of the current network, Qatar Airways continues to offer passengers a sustainable solution for their travel plans.
We also remain in close contact with Australian authorities regarding flight restrictions as ensuring the ongoing repatriation of passengers to the country is becoming increasingly challenging. Despite the restrictions on passengers allowed to be carried into the country, we continue to fulfil our mission to facilitate ongoing repatriation for as many people as possible by operating a robust Australian network to five cities, Adelaide, Brisbane, Melbourne (currently no inbound passengers permitted), Perth and Sydney, offering more flights than any other international airline. While other airlines grounded operations, we maintained our flights, carrying almost 40% of all international travellers to and from Australia between April and June 2020, helping to take over 180,000 Australian and international travellers home since the start of the crisis. These flights have also helped maintain vital supply chains for Australian businesses with our airline carrying over 15,000 tonnes of Australian goods since 1 March 2020.
With the impact of COVID-19 on global travel, passengers have had to change their plans at short notice and it has been difficult for them to plan ahead with any certainty. What they want and deserve are flexibility and reliability, and in Qatar Airways we hope they find an airline they can trust. The amount we have paid out in refunds has undoubtedly had an impact on our bottom line, but it is our duty to do the right thing by our customers and trade partners and as an airline we are strong enough to mitigate the impact of this
Our refreshed mobile app is the perfect travel companion for our passengers, allowing them to take control of their travel plans, keep them informed at all times and, importantly in the current climate, limit physical contact throughout their journey.
At Qatar Airways, we continue to invest in award-winning, five-star products and services across all stages of our customers’ journey, and digital technology plays an important role in this. Our customers expect their digital interactions with the Qatar Airways brand to be as smooth and seamless as their journey onboard, and we are working to ensure that our digital products continue to be world-class.”
We are glad to see Helsinki return to our network, a significant indicator of the recovery of the Nordic travel market. With a total of 22 weekly flights to the region we are delighted to be the first Gulf carrier to offer flights to the four Nordic capitals of Copenhagen, Helsinki, Oslo and Stockholm. While the drop in air travel demand due to Covid-19 forced us to temporarily suspend services to Helsinki, we are proud to have never stopped flying to Copenhagen, Oslo and Stockholm. As we pass the worst of the crisis, we look forward to increasing our services to the Nordic region to support the recovery of tourism and trade in the region.
Qatar Airways is delighted to sponsor the AS Roma Women team as we see women’s football going from strength to strength around the world. We are proud of our diverse portfolio of global sport sponsorships and are totally committed to supporting the women’s game, reflecting our belief in the power that sport has in bringing people together.
We are thrilled to welcome the AS Roma Women team to the Qatar Airways football family and look forward to seeing the players proudly sporting our logo on their shirts. Women’s sport has experienced unprecedented growth in viewership, attendance and fan following in recent years and we are excited at the opportunities this partnership presents the airline.
During this crisis more passengers have chosen to fly with Qatar Airways than any other airline, and 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
Our wide network of flights during this period has ensured we have kept up to date with the latest in international airport procedures and implemented the most advanced safety and hygiene measures on board our aircraft and in our award winning home and hub, Hamad International Airport, recently voted the Best Airport in the Middle East for the sixth consecutive year. This is why more people rely on us for international travel than any other airline during this crisis and why we will continue to ensure the safest and most reliable experience for our passengers as we resume flights to more destinations over the summer.
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 we 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.
We are incredibly proud to join efforts with UNHCR to provide relief aid to people and communities most in need. By having a robust international network, we are pleased to be able to give a helping hand to support this great cause. During this crisis, we have worked closely with governments and NGOs to prioritise the shipment of medical and aid supplies transporting over 175,000 tonnes, the equivalent of approximately 1,750 fully loaded Boeing 777 freighters. We are committed to making a difference and by working together, we are confident we will overcome the current adversities with strength, solidarity and resilience.
As the depths of COVID-19 continue to take the world captive, we never imagined the magnitude its impact would have, or just how many lives it would touch. Our primary focus at UNHCR is to safeguard the rights and wellbeing of the most marginalised and vulnerable members of society. It is times like these when we must take action and strive to find lasting solutions which is why our partnership with Qatar Airways is crucial. With limited access to water, sanitation systems and health facilities, refugees are particularly at risk right now and that is why we are developing key responses to mitigate these challenges, alongside our respected partners Qatar Airways. Together, we must drive action.
We know there are many people who want to be with their families and loved ones during this difficult time. We are thankful to the Australian Government, Airports and staff for their support in helping us to add additional flights to get people home, and in particular, to bring flights to Brisbane.
We continue to operate around 150 daily flights to more than 70 cities worldwide. Sometimes governments put in place restrictions that mean we simply cannot fly to a country. We are working closely with governments around the world, and wherever possible we will reinstate or add more flights.
In a challenging and uncertain time like this when the world is facing an unprecedented global crisis, Qatar Airways is doing everything to help passengers to get back home to their beloved ones. In order to meet the high demand, we have increased the number of departures and capacity to our Nordic destinations and our hope is that this challenging times will soon be behind us.