Qatar Airways touched down in Adelaide for the first time on 3 May 2016, marking the airline’s fourth destination in Australia.
The airline’s group chief executive, Akbar Al Baker, travelled on the inaugural flight, and he was greeted in Adelaide by a high-level delegation including South Australia’s Minister for Tourism Leon Bignell, Adelaide Airport’s managing director Mark Young, the Governor of South Australia Hieu Van Le, and the South Australian Tourism Commission’s CEO Rodney Harrex.
The launch also marks the first time Qatar Airways – or any airline – has flown the new Airbus A350 aircraft to Australia.
“We are proud to be the first airline to fly the Airbus A350, for which we were the global launch customer, to Australia,” said Al Baker. “Adelaide is an important addition to our route map giving Qatar Airways its fourth gateway into Australia, and we are pleased to offer the people of South Australia the most modern aircraft in the industry to connect them with 38 countries in Europe, 21 destinations in Africa and 27 destinations in the Middle East.”
Qatar Airways will now fly daily to Adelaide, with services departing Doha at 2130 and arriving in the Australian city at 1700 the next day. The return flight will then leave Adelaide at 2125 and arrive back in Doha at 0450 the following morning.
The A350-900 aircraft deployed on the route can seat 283 passengers – 36 in business class and 247 in economy.
“The Qatar Airways Doha-Adelaide service opens up a brand new link with the Middle East, and provides excellent connections further afield such as with Europe and the UK,” said Young. “We’re excited to be the first airport in Australia to welcome the new-generation Airbus A350-900 aircraft – one of the most technologically advanced twin-engine aircraft in the world.”
Adelaide becomes the fourth city in Australia to be served by Qatar Airways, which has been flying to Melbourne since 2009, to Perth since 2012 and to Sydney since March this year.