Qatar Airways has withdrawn flights from 18 destinations, allowing Hamad International Airport (HIA) to accommodate other airlines flying 2022 FIFA World Cup fans to Qatar, Qatar Airways Group Chief Executive HE Akbar al-Baker said Tuesday.
HE al-Baker made the statement during a press conference where he was joined by Nasser al-Khater, CEO of FIFA World Cup Qatar 2022, and Badr al-Meer, MATAR Chief Operations Officer.
HE al-Baker emphasised that the national carrier’s priority is to give access to all countries participating and bringing in large numbers of passengers for the World Cup, which is slated from November 20 to December 18.
“Actually, no. We don’t have any new destinations. But on the contrary, we have reduced and withdrawn from 18 destinations in order to make space at Hamad International Airport for new airlines that will bring fans,” al-Baker said in response to a query.
According to al-Meer, about 500 shuttle flights per day are expected to land at Doha International Airport, including charter flights and private jets.
“We have two types of flights at Doha International Airport: the shuttle and charter. We have around 500 shuttle flights a day, while for charter, we continue to receive requests for charter flights. The list will be announced after it is finalised,” al-Meer said.
On post-World Cup Qatar, HE al-Baker said he is optimistic that the country’s tourism industry will flourish after the tournament. “Qatar is now becoming the favourite of people who want new adventures in the tourism industry,” he said, adding that Qatar “is investing hundreds of millions” in its tourism industry and to promote the country’s various tourist destinations.
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