Qatar Airways launches additional flights to Vietnam and Thailand

New Hanoi Route And Increased Flight Frequency To Ho Chi Minh, Phuket And Bangkok Provides Passengers More Travel Options

Qatar Airways continues to expand its operations in Asia with the launch of 14 new flights to Thailand and seven additional services to Vietnam, increasing the total number of flights to both markets from 18 to 39 a week effective November 1.

The significant capacity increase reflects the growing importance of the Asia Pacific market and Qatar Airways’ focus on targeting under-served routes to maximise connectivity between Europe and Asia via Doha as part of its global expansion strategy. It is the first and only Middle East carrier to fly to Vietnam and to Phuket in Thailand.

In Vietnam, the airline introduced its latest Hanoi-Doha service via Bangkok four times weekly and added three new flights to Ho Chi Minh City. Qatar Airways now operates 11 flights a week to Doha spread across Vietnam’s two largest cities, up from its previous four services a week to Ho Chi Minh City.

Qatar Airways is also celebrating 10 years of flying to Thailand’s capital city of Bangkok this year with the introduction of a new daily flight, taking capacity up from double to thrice-daily services. Four of the new Bangkok flights continue onto Hanoi and three onto Ho Chi Minh City. Passengers originating in Thailand or Vietnam can also purchase tickets to fly between Bangkok and both Hanoi and Ho Chi Minh City on Qatar Airways.

The airline’s Doha-Phuket service via Kuala Lumpur which began with six-flights-a-week on October 12 has also been stepped up to daily services since the beginning of November. Total number of flights between Qatar and Thailand now stands at 28 a week from the initial 14 services.

Qatar Airways Chief Executive Officer Akbar Al Baker who was on board the inaugural flight into Hanoi on November 1 and the new service to Phuket on November 4 thanked government officials and partners of both countries for their support.

The travel market in Asia is experiencing significant growth and one which Al Baker stressed Qatar Airways was well placed to take advantage of.

“IATA statistics have passenger demand in the Asia Pacific region up over 10 per cent on the previous year. The timing of Qatar airways’ expansion drive in Asia couldn’t be better to take advantage of this increase in traffic,” he said.

The launch of Hanoi flights sees Qatar Airways’ Asia Pacific route network extend to 18 destinations. Globally, Qatar Airways has launched a further seven new routes since February 2010 – Bengaluru (Bangalore), Copenhagen, Ankara, Tokyo, Barcelona, Sao Paulo and Buenos Aires.

Al Baker outlined Qatar Airways’ global expansion plans, highlighting the airline’s focus on targeting underserved routes and maximising connectivity to key cities beyond Doha. The airline’s growth in Europe featured strongly with Qatar Airways to introduce five new European destinations over the next five months including Nice (November 24), Budapest (January 17), Bucharest (January 17), Brussels (January 31) and Stuttgart (March 9).

By 2013, Qatar Airways plans to serve 120 key business and leisure destinations worldwide with a modern fleet of 120 aircraft. Today, the airline’s fleet stands at 90 aircraft, flying to 94 destinations across Europe, Middle East, Africa, Asia Pacific, North and South America.