The launch of the Qatar Airways’ service between Doha – London on the Boeing 787 Dreamliner makes the airline the first ever to operate regular scheduled flights with the state-of-the art aircraft to and from the UK.
Despite wintry weather, Qatar Airways’ 787 – flight QR075 – was warmly welcomed at London Heathrow on Thursday morning by a special arrival ceremony.
An official delegation from Doha was on the inaugural flight from the airline’s Doha hub, including Qatar Airways Chief Executive Officer Akbar Al Baker and VIP guest His Excellency Michael O’Neill, British Ambassador to the State of Qatar.
The Dreamliner’s debut from the Doha-based carrier marks the start of an exciting new era for travellers to and from the UK, who will have the opportunity to travel the world onboard one of the most spacious and comfortable aircraft in the skies today.
Combining breakthrough technology with a human approach to design, it is the first time Boeing has developed a plane from the point of view of passenger experience. Qatar Airways worked closely with Boeing on the design interiors being a key customer of the manufacturer’s newest aircraft. The 787 is designed as the next generation aircraft for air travel well into the 21st century offering unrivalled passenger comfort and space.
On arrival at Heathrow, Qatar Airways Chief Executive Officer Akbar Al Baker said: “Today we inaugurate our 787 on the London Heathrow route, putting Qatar Airways firmly on the global aviation map as a carrier with a determination to continue its expansion drive and improve an already superior in-flight product.
"The Doha - Heathrow route is one of our most popular international routes and it was only fitting that we deploy our new 787 to and from London.”
Initially, one of the airline's five daily flights is being operated with the Boeing 787 – Flight QR 075 departing Doha at 0625 hrs, arriving at London Heathrow at 1105 hrs, with the return flight QR 076 departing London Heathrow at 1505 hrs, arriving in Doha at 0045 hrs the following day.
Qatar Airways took delivery of the first of 60 Dreamliners last month with the third 787 joining the airline’s fleet just days ago. Since taking delivery of its first 787 four weeks ago, Qatar Airways has been flying the aircraft between Doha and both Dubai and Kuwait allowing cabin crew to familiarise themselves with the airplane.
Al Baker added: “We will be introducing the Dreamliner on our daily Doha – Perth route from February 1 next year, the first ever 787 commercial service to Australia giving travellers between the UK and Australia a unique 787 experience of unrivalled comfort and style all the way with the world’s Five Star and Best Airline.”
Soon after arrival, Al Baker was back on board the aircraft giving assembled guests at Heathrow a personal tour of the 787 and its unique features.
Qatar Airways has 254 custom-made seats across its 787 Business and Economy Class cabins with specially designed interiors. Business Class is configured 1–2–1 with 22 seats, while Economy has 232 seats in a 3–3–3 layout.
The Qatar Airways Boeing 787 Dreamliner at a glance
Innovative inflight entertainment
An award-winning iTouch innovative touch screen control unit debuts on Qatar Airways’ Boeing 787 Dreamliner. The dual-screen interface allows passengers in all classes to multi-task, for example playing a game or emailing on the handheld device while watching a movie on their personal screen.
Onboard Wi-Fi in all classes means business travellers can stay connected to clients and colleagues, and holidaymakers can stay connected to friends and family through social networks, allowing them to share memories from their travels before they get home. Passengers also have access to 1,000 movie, programming and audio entertainment options, an iPort, USB port, and a remote data outlet.
Lower cabin altitude
The Dreamliner’s cabin is pressurised to a new maximum level of 6,000 feet – 2,000 feet lower than most other aircraft. Altitude chamber tests show that because the body absorbs eight per cent more oxygen into the blood at this altitude, passengers experience fewer headaches and less dizziness and fatigue.
The Dreamliner’s dramatically improved cabin pressure, air quality, and smoother handling will result in a more comfortable journey for passengers in Business and Economy.
Many of the usual interior sounds are minimised with quieter air conditioning, nterior materials reduce squeaks and interior design reduces vibrations.
Fresh air is introduced into the cabin via air scoops on the side of the fuselage. Newly introduced on the 787, an additional gaseous filtration system also removes odours, irritants and gaseous contaminants, some of the primary contributors to throat, eye and nose irritation for passengers. More moisture in the air will help skin, eyes, lips, and noses to feel more comfortable.
The Boeing 787 Dreamliner features large dimmable windows, more than 30 per cent bigger than other similarly sized airplanes and larger than anything offered by other commercial jetliners giving all passengers a good view outside. The windows are not built with conventional shades but instead, passengers can regulate the intensity of light coming through their windows with the touch of a button allowing passengers to change the tint of the window from fully transparent to completely dimmed.
Dynamic cabin lighting
The spacious look and feel of the cabin is enhanced by dynamic mood lighting: more than 20 specially tailored scenes to help your body clock adjust to crossing different time zones using the latest LED technology.
The architecture of the Dreamliner is designed with room for passengers to actually move about the cabin with a spacious feeling interior. The plane is designed with welcoming entryways, larger windows, vaulted ceilings and sidewalls are more vertical for better shoulder and headroom.
Environmentally cleaner and quieter
The Boeing 787 Dreamliner is the environmental leader among airplanes. It consumes 20% less fuel and produces 20% lower CO 2 emissions. The Dreamliner is much quieter for the communities it flies over, and boasts a more efficient use of the planet’s resources than its predecessors during manufacturing.
Larger overhead bins
The Dreamliner has big overhead luggage bins – 30% larger than the industry standard. They close up and away, leaving more overhead space and minimising the need to store bags beneath the seat.
Get there faster
The Boeing 787 Dreamliner is the first commercial aircraft to be built primarily of composite materials, reducing weight and operating costs.