Qatar Airways has teased aviation enthusiasts on Twitter yesterday with news of a “special flight” that landed in Doha in the early evening.
— Qatar Airways (@qatarairways) February 17, 2014
The surprise in question turned out to be a Boeing 777 adorned in FC Barcelona colors, which had just flown in from Dublin after receiving its new paint job from aviation services company Eirtech.
Four year old A7-BAE – which is currently en route from Bangkok to Doha after an overnight return flight – is currently the only aircraft in the airline’s fleet to sport the livery.
However, when reached by phone this morning, a Qatar Airways spokesperson did not rule out the possibility of more aircraft receiving the paint job in the future.
The airline has been sponsoring the football team since August, when it took over from previous sponsors Qatar Foundation.
As part of Barca’s agreement with Qatar Sports Investment, it will receive some $45 million a season to sport the airline’s logo on its jerseys until 2016.
At a press conference last year to mark the beginning of the deal, CEO of Qatar Airways Akbar Al Baker told journalists of his intention to paint some of his fleet in the team’s colors, promising that the airline “would be displaying Barca at all the world’s major airports.”
Have you spotted the aircraft yet? Thoughts?