WATCH: Qatar Airways launches inaugural flight to St Petersburg

2017-12-22 11:30 - Kavitha Pillay
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Qatar Airways in Russia. (Photo: Supplied)

Cape Town - Qatar Airways launched a new daily non-stop route to St Petersburg - its second destination in Russia.

Continuing its robust expansion in Eastern Europe - with services to Adana, Prague, Skopje, Kyiv and Sarajevo already launched in 2017 - the airline's first non-stop flight from Doha to St Petersburg landed on Tuesday, 19 December, at Pulkovo Airport, marking its second gateway in Russia.

On board the inaugural Qatar Airways flight to St Petersburg, Qatar Airways Group Chief Executive, His Excellency Akbar Al Baker, was joined by His Excellency Nurmakhmad Kholov, The Russian Federation’s Ambassador to the State of Qatar.

Al Baker says that following the success of the airline's Moscow route, it is "extremely happy to extend our reach into Russia". "By launching this new route, we are committing to further supporting the Russian market, and providing inbound and outbound passengers a seamless journey through the skies,” he adds.

ALSO SEE: Qatar Airways expands its direct flights offering

St Petersburg, Russia’s second largest city after Moscow, is considered an important Russian port on the Baltic Sea. The culturally diverse city is filled with historical architectural gems, including the Winter Palace and the Kazan Cathedral.

Pulkovo Airport Chief Executive Officer, Vladimir Yakushev, says that the launch of the flight "represents new extraordinary possibilities for the city’s business and leisure travel market".

"With the exquisite product offered by the airline, St Petersburg will receive a boost of both inbound and outbound tourism once connected to Qatar Airways’ worldwide route network via one of the most vibrant global air hubs, Hamad International Airport, in Doha,” he adds.

In future, Qatar Airways will operate its daily St Petersburg service with an Airbus A320 aircraft, which features 12 flatbed seats in business class and 120 seats in economy class.

With more than 10 tonnes of belly hold cargo capacity per week to and from St Petersburg on board the A320 aircraft, which serves this new route, Qatar Airways Cargo will also expand its import and export services in Russia. The launch of service to St Petersburg has increased the overall belly hold cargo capacity to and from Russia, with more than 40 tonnes being transported each way per week.

Doha – St Petersburg flights schedule

Monday, Tuesday, Thursday, Saturday - Doha (DOH) to St Petersburg (LED) QR279 departs 07:30 and arrives 13:50. St Petersburg (LED) to Doha (DOH) to QR280 departs 17:25 and arrives 23:30.

Wednesday, Friday, Sunday - Doha (DOH) to St Petersburg (LED) QR281 departs 15:55 and arrives 22:10. St Petersburg (LED) to Doha (DOH) to QR282 departs 23:15 arrives 05:20+1

Qatar Airways' new routes

Qatar Airways has added many new exciting destinations to its network in 2017, including Auckland, New Zealand; Dublin, Republic of Ireland; Nice, France and Prague, Czech Republic, among others.

The national carrier of the State of Qatar, Qatar Airways, is one of the fastest-growing airlines operating one of the youngest fleets in the world.

Now in its 20th year of operations, the airline has a modern fleet of more than 200 aircraft flying to business and leisure destinations across six continents.

ALSO SEE: Qatar Airways orders 6 Boeing aircraft despite Gulf standoff

The award-winning airline has received a number of accolades this year, including ‘Airline of the Year’ by the prestigious 2017 Skytrax World Airline Awards, which was held at the Paris Air Show. This is the fourth time that Qatar Airways has been given this global recognition as the world’s best airline.

In addition to being voted Best Airline by travellers from around the world, Qatar’s national carrier also won a raft of other major awards at the ceremony, including ‘Best Airline in the Middle East,’ ‘World’s Best Business Class’ and ‘World’s Best First Class Airline Lounge.’

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