Major celebrations as Qatar Airways marks five-year anniversary in Berlin

15.12.10 14:55
On 15 December 2005, the airline launched a scheduled flight to the hub of Doha / Continuous positive development and expansion to daily flights
The grey and white jets featuring an Oryx on the tail fin have been departing regularly from Berlin-Tegel to Qatar for exactly five years now: in 2005, the new route connected the German capital to the international route network of one of the world’s leading five-star airlines via the hub of Doha. Major celebrations were under way yesterday as the airline marked the anniversary by inviting numerous guests and business partners to the Königliche Porzellan-Manufaktur – Berlin’s royal porcelain manufactory.

The high expectations Qatar Airways had of Berlin at the time have been met: thanks to the outstanding capacity of the airline’s Airbus A320, daily flights are now operated to the Middle East. The route rights for an initial four flights a week were extended in February 2008 to include a daily service. Occasionally, according to demand, larger Airbus A330 jets were also operated. Plans of the rapidly growing airline to expand not only included the Berlin connection, however: in the same period, Qatar Airways more than doubled its aircraft and built up a fleet of ultra-long-haul Boeing B777ER jets, enabling travel from Berlin to Australia. The following year saw the number of destinations rise from 69 to 100, some of which were served by several flights per day.

On 15 December 2005, the Governing Mayor of Berlin, Klaus Wowereit, welcomed the new airline to the capital and thus underlined the importance of the new route for the city’s social, political and economic life. With its new service, Qatar Airways became a forerunner for the now very tightly knit economic relations with Qatar. The richest country in Asia holds shares in major enterprises in Germany, and conversely, local companies in Germany are actively involved in infrastructure and energy projects in the desert state – for example in researching alternative fuels or the optimum use of solar energy or setting up a public transport system in the country.

Akbar Al Baker, CEO of Qatar Airways: “In order for two states to be able to develop relations, certain basic requirements must be met. Good traffic connections between capitals, for example, are essential. We laid the foundations for this exactly five years ago on launching our service in Berlin. This evidently marked the beginning of a very successful era of cooperation between Germany and Qatar.” Since then, his company has continuously worked on improving connections and campaigned for more route rights, from which both parties profit. The result is the launch of the new Stuttgart–Doha route as of March next year and 11 rather than one weekly flight to Munich, increasing the number of flights between Germany and Qatar to 31 per week.

Prof. Dr. Rainer Schwarz, CEO of Berlin Airports: “We are equally delighted, and warmly congratulate Qatar Airways on its five-year anniversary in Berlin. Qatar Airways is a key strategic partner for Berlin Airports – the people of Berlin and Brandenburg have profited from this stable partnership for the past five years now. The long-haul route from Berlin to Doha has established itself. Together, we are committed to continuing this successful cooperation at the new Berlin Brandenburg International Airport (BBI) as of June 2012.”

Qatar Airways transported around 14 million passengers in financial year 2009/10. The airline aims to significantly expand its current fleet of 91 aircraft to 120 aircraft by 2013. Qatar Airways is currently awaiting delivery of almost 200 aircraft with a total value of over US$40 billion (approx. €30.2 billion). The airline has ordered 80 Airbus A350s, 60 Boeing 787s, 10 Boeing 777s, 17 Airbus A320s as well as five Airbus 380 super jumbos. Qatar Airways currently offers flights to more than 90 destinations around the world in Europe, the Middle East, Africa, the Indian sub-continent, the Far East, Australia and America. Qatar Airways is one of just a few airlines to be awarded the renowned five-star Skytrax ranking for quality and service, the highest possible ranking. The airline’s service staff were named “Best in the Middle East” for the eighth time running, following a survey of 18 million passengers in 2010, and the first-time winner of this year’s “Staff Service Excellence Award for the Middle East”, which replaces the “Best Cabin Staff” category and now also includes ground service staff and all passenger touch points. The airline’s Business Class and Business Class Catering were also declared the best in the world. Qatar Airways also received the Skytrax award for “Best Airline in the Middle East” for the fifth consecutive year, ranking third in the list of world’s best airlines. In Germany, Qatar Airways offers 24 weekly flights from Frankfurt, Munich and Berlin to Doha. Further information on Qatar Airways can be found online at www.qatarairways.com – and at www.qatarairways.com/360, passengers can discover all that Qatar Airways has to offer even before departure in a fascinating 360° virtual tour.
Hannes Stefan Hönemann

Hannes Stefan Hönemann Head of Corporate

+49 30 6091-70100

Daniel Tolksdorf

Daniel Tolksdorf Spokesperson

+49 30 6091-70100

Kathrin Westhölter

Kathrin Westhölter Spokesperson

+49 30 6091-70100