ROUTES AFRICA: Qatar Airways Opens Reservations to Addis Ababa

Fast-expanding Gulf carrier Qatar Airways has opened reservations for its previously announced new route to the Ethiopian capital, Addis Ababa, from its Doha hub, The HUB Daily can reveal.  Details of Qatar Airways’ expansion into Ethiopia was revealed at the Arabian Travel Market earlier this year where Chief Executive officer, Akbar Al Baker also confirmed further network growth with new links to the US city of Philadelphia as well as to Clark International Airport in the Philippines, but until now the schedule has not been available in the GDS.

Qatar Airways will be the sole carrier on the route which has been made possible following the conclusion of bilateral talks with the Ethiopian government.  It will utilise an Airbus A320 on the three times weekly flight which will launch on September 18, 2013.  The flight will operate as an overnight sector departing Doha at 22:15 and arriving in the Ethiopian capital at 01:40 the following morning.  It will then depart East Africa at 02:50 and arrive back in Doha at 06:15.

Ethiopia is fast emerging as a growing economic centre, forming strong trade links with Europe, USA and the Asia Pacific region. “We have been looking to fly to the Ethiopian capital Addis Ababa for some time, and extremely delighted we will be able to do so later year as new aircraft join the fleet,” said Al Baker.

“Ethiopia is known for its thriving industries including coffee production, agricultural commodity exports and livestock production.  There is clearly demand and huge potential to and from Ethiopia, one of the many underserved markets across Africa. As a global network carrier we are able to fulfill the needs of the travelling public from such markets and for those wanting to travel there from destinations that we serve around the world,” he added.