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Monday, March 8, 2021

Qatar Airways A380 debut flight apparently delayed until July

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a380a

Qatar’s national carrier appears to have delayed its inaugural A380 flight by at least two weeks, according to its latest route update.

Qatar Airways is slated to get three of its order of 13 A380s – the world’s largest passenger aircraft – this summer. It had scheduled the first route to be from Doha to to London’s Heathrow Airport on June 17, but that has now been pushed back to July 1.

The airline has so far not made any public announcements about the delay. A spokesman told Doha News yesterday that airline has “no new update to offer” on the planned launch flight.

Passengers also do not appear to have been notified of the change of aircraft. A Boeing 777 is expected to operate the flight on June 17 instead.

Travel consultant and blogger Ben Schlappig writes that he has not been told that his booking in First Class on the inaugural flight will need to be re-booked, despite the fact that the airline has no First Class cabin on its 777 fleet.

Delayed deliveries

Qatar Airways formally announced the “highly anticipated arrival” of its first three A380s in a statement at the end of April, in which it also set the June 17 date for the aircraft’s debut to London Heathrow.

The delivery of these super-jumbos is more than six months late, due to the delayed launch of Hamad International Airport, which finally opened its doors to all airlines, including Qatar Airways, this week.

The airport has six specially designed, double-decker gates for the A380, as well as an aircraft maintenance hangar that can hold two of the huge aircraft at once.

New routes

The airline has also announced that the A380’s second destination will be Paris – the launch date for which remains unchanged at July 3.

And earlier this week, the airline’s CEO Akbar Al Baker told Doha News that the A380 would also fly the Doha-New York route.

firstclass

However, the airline has been unable to clarify whether the aircraft will replace the current Boeing 777 on the route, or whether the addition of the A380 will signal the beginning of twice-daily operations to the city. No launch date for the new service has been announced so far.

When the A380 does enter service, the aircraft is expected to take over flight numbers QR003 and QR004, which leave Doha at 7:55am, and return from London at 3:05pm, respectively.

Qatar Airways’ A380 will have 517 seats in all – 457 in economy, 52 in business and eight in first class.

Its first and business class cabins – and a special lounge area for premium passengers – will both be located on the aircraft’s upper deck, with economy seating being split between both floors of the aircraft.

Were you set to fly on the A380 soon after launch? Thoughts?

14 COMMENTS

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Ben
Ben
6 years ago

As the A380 is far bigger than the 777, and assuming most seats have been sold, how will they fit those booked on the A380 onto the 777? Guess they will need two?!
I am booked onto the A380 flight for July 3rd.

Desert Witch
Desert Witch
6 years ago

Delays again. Now there’s a surprise.
Here’s another surprise for Doha. It’s going to be hot today.

K Abdulghani
K Abdulghani
6 years ago

Pilot hiring still not finish yet…

Waveydavey
Waveydavey
6 years ago

I’m due to fly on it on the 7th July and I have an upstairs seat. I hope it is a definite by then!

Jimjam
Jimjam
6 years ago
Reply to  Waveydavey

It could be a bit windy otherwise.

Waveydavey
Waveydavey
6 years ago
Reply to  Jimjam

Ha ha!! Good view though!

Jimjam
Jimjam
6 years ago
Reply to  Waveydavey

And plenty of leg room!

Big Biker
Big Biker
6 years ago

Another classic from Qatar Airways. Changes and delays and no official announcement. This is another example of their non existent customer services. When I go to London I use BA via Bahrain, granted a short stop is required but premium economy service is excellent and they upgrade frequently.

fullmoon07
fullmoon07
6 years ago
Reply to  Big Biker

couldn’t agree more….Emirates people, Emirates: their 5 stars are not bought like some other 5-star-supposed-to-be airlines

ex_pat
ex_pat
6 years ago
Reply to  Big Biker

But they are a 5* airline with 5* customer service.

Maybe they are changing the cabin after this from Etihad;

http://www.etihad.com/en-us/experience-etihad/flying-reimagined/the-residence/

Michael Fryer
Michael Fryer
6 years ago

Airbus cannot currently confirm when the aircraft is due to be delivered. At the moment their press releases put the delay at “several weeks”.
An A380 flight to London in early July would seem very optimistic at this stage.
http://www.reuters.com/article/2014/05/30/airlines-iata-a-idUSL6N0OG42Z20140530

Murray P Robertson
Murray P Robertson
6 years ago

I am booked on the July 1st flight I am now worried about what plane will actually be used, having twice been booked to fly on the Dreamliner and twice had the plane changed with no notification. The last time the replacement plane was very old, trim glued up and seat stuck in recline
It’s a shame really as the cabin crew are always excellent

Barry
Barry
6 years ago

I am flying London to doha on July 15th, I had an email saying flight had changed and when I checked it was an a380, it’s now been changed to an a330 but return flight on the 30th July is still an a380

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