Qatar Airways increasing flights to Vietnam

Qatar Airways is expanding its operations in Vietnam, a fast-growing market in Asia, where the Middle East airline has already been flying from Doha to Ho Chi Minh City.

The flag carrier of Qatar announced Oct. 4 that from November 1 this year, Hanoi would become its second network point in the country, with four weekly flights to Doha operating via Bangkok.Qatar Airways said it would launch a third daily flight to the Thai capital November 1. The additional Bangkok service will continue to Vietnam with four of the flights heading onwards to the Vietnamese capital and three onto Ho Chi Minh City, making the HCMC route a daily service.

The new daily service means four direct flights and three via Bangkok.

Meanwhile, the flights to Hanoi will be on Mondays, Tuesdays, Fridays and Saturdays.

“Our third daily flight to Bangkok will create further connectivity across our network into Thailand and also allows us to improve our services to Vietnam where we already fly to Ho Chi Minh City and look forward to adding Hanoi to our schedules,” Qatar Airways Chief Executive Officer Akbar Al Baker said in the announcement.

Beginning October 12, Qatar Airways operates six flights a week to Thailand’s Phuket via Kuala Lumpur.

Akbar Al Baker added in the statement, “With Phuket and Hanoi coming online around the same time, Qatar Airways will soon operate to two destinations each in Vietnam and Thailand and we are thrilled to be able to offer the traveling public these exciting destinations and, with it, offer more choice.”

The travel market in Asia is experiencing significant growth, according to the International Air Transport Association (IATA).

Remarking the growth, Baker said, “IATA statistics have passenger demand in the Asia Pacific region up over 10 per cent on the previous year. The timing of Qatar Airways’ expansion drive in Asia couldn’t be better to take advantage of this increase in traffic.”

Both Emirates and Etihad Airways, two other major Middle East airlines, are not serving Vietnam.

In March 2007, Qatar Airways launched its Doha – Ho Chi Minh City route with four non-stop direct flights.

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