Qatar Airways boosts capacity to Copenhagen and Barcelona

Qatar Airways is to increase capacity on the Copenhagen and Barcelona routes from March 27 – the start of the Northern Summer 2011 flying schedules.

With flights to the Danish capital increasing to daily and a wide body Airbus A330 being deployed to the Mediterranean port city, the capacity rise marks a sharp increase on the two routes launched within the past nine months.

The non-stop Doha – Copenhagen route, currently served six-times-a-week, will rise to daily with the introduction of one extra flight operating every Thursday. Services to Copenhagen were launched in March 2010.

From four-flights-a-week at the time of launch using narrow body Airbus A319 aircraft, the route has been upgraded in recent months with additional frequency and the much bigger A330.

The Doha – Barcelona route, launched only in June last year, is currently operated with a narrow-body Airbus A319 aircraft. The introduction of an A330, will more than double seat capacity on each of the daily Barcelona flights.

The capacity hikes come at a time when Qatar Airways is concentrating much of its international expansion across Europe during the first quarter of 2011.

Over the next three months, the Doha-based airline will begin flights to the Romanian capital Bucharest (January 17); the capital city of Hungary, Budapest (January 17); Belgium’s capital Brussels (January 31); and the German car manufacturing centre of Stuttgart (March 6).

Qatar Airways Chief Executive Officer Akbar Al Baker said: “These capacity increases reflect the importance we place on offering passengers greater choice. We build capacity based on market conditions and the availability of aircraft, and today’s announcement shows we are positive about Copenhagen and Barcelona allowing us to deploy additional aircraft on these routes.

“Copenhagen has been a great success story. In less than a year, we will have more than doubled capacity on the route from a narrow body to wide body aircraft, to soon becoming daily operations.

“I am delighted to say we remain the only Gulf carrier flying to Scandinavia with both Copenhagen and Stockholm in our network attracting significant connecting business from Norway, Finland and the Baltic States onto our dedicated Danish and Swedish flights.”

Added Al Baker: “Similarly, our Barcelona route has by far exceeded our expectations. We are extremely delighted to offer our passengers to and from Spain with more travel options and more capacity into this key European market.

“On New Year’s Day we introduced our flagship Boeing 777 on the daily Doha – Madrid and, now with the A330 operating our Barcelona services, our double daily, expanded Spanish operation will by far be the biggest of any Gulf carrier serving Spain.”

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