Qatar Airways: Our Product Is The Same On A Narrowbody And Widebody

Qatar Airways is famed for its high-quality service when connecting passengers across the continents. While the airline carries a range of widebodies, the airline also deployed numerous narrowbody units on its intercontinental routes. Mr. Rossen Dimitrov, Chief Officer Customer Experience of Qatar Airways, explains that whether it’s a single-aisle or twin-aisle, the experience is the same.

Qatar Airways Airbus A320 Landing At Athens
Narrowbodies are increasingly being stretched on longer distances across the industry, but Qatar Airways affirms that the airline’s quality is not lost. Photo: Getty Images

Balancing the loads

Earlier this year, Qatar Airways Group CEO Akbar Al Baker explained to Simple Flying why the A321LR is being taken. Ultimately, when there is downtime in off-season markets, the aircraft is the perfect solution. There could be a 60% load factor on these routes on a widebody. However, with the LR’s extra range for a narrowbody, the size offers a balanced load throughout the cabin.

Nonetheless, despite Qatar Airways showing its keenness to take on long-range narrowbodies, it is not such a fan of the ultra-long-haul narrowbody sector. Overall, the firm isn’t so fazed about competition in this segment as it feels that it’s a tiny market.

Busy fleet

Qatar Airways currently holds 29 Airbus A320s and three Airbus A321s. These planes can be seen at destinations such as Athens, Budapest, Larnaca, Addis Ababa, Yerevan, Baghdad, Antalya, Prague, and Sofia. Moreover, they have been spotted at the likes of Dar es Salaam, Peshawar, Kolkata, Hyderabad, Ahmedabad, Amritsar, and Mumbai.

While not all of these routes stretch long distances, more than a handful can be considered long-haul. These planes have also been filling in for widebodies at times.

Qatar Airways A320 Economy
Qatar Airways’ A320 family aircraft support the airlines’ A330s, A350s, 777s, and 787s well. Photo: Qatar Airways

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No compromises

Qatar Airways’ leadership shares that its priority in this field is to operate a green and clean fleet. It doesn’t matter which size the plane is, as the approach is the same.

“When it comes to our narrowbodies operating on a variety of routes, I don’t look at the aircraft as a narrowbody or a widebody. Our product is the same.” Dimitrov tells Simple Flying.

“Whether you’re in the business class in the narrowbody or the economy class of a narrowbody the service and the product that you get is still the same, and the experience is still the Qatar Airways experience. So, we’re smart on how we plan and utilize our aircraft. Especially during the pandemic, we have had to pay additional attention to how we do things.”

Qatar Airways A320 Business
The Qatar Airways business class features 12 79-inch long, 21-inch wide 180° lie-flat beds. Photo: Qatar Airways

Dimitrov concludes that Qatar airways is highly disciplined with everything it does. This includes how the company plans its network, how its revenue management team strategizes, and how its commercial department operates. Altogether, the airline does not make random decisions. There is plenty of careful planning behind every action the firm takes.

What are your thoughts about Qatar Airways’ narrowbody fleet and the routes that the aircraft operate? Have you flown on one of the airline’s single-aisle planes? Let us know what you think of the operations in the comment section.

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