Qatar Airways 777x

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  1. Qatar Airways will not retire Boeing 777s from its fleet until the national carrier receives the long-range, wide-body, twin-engine 777X aircraft, group chief executive HE Akbar al-Baker has said.
  2. The Airbus A350-900 entered service in January 2015 with Qatar Airways. Its bigger brother, the A350-1000, took its first revenue flight on February 24th, 2018, with Qatar Airways also the launch customer.
  3. Qatar Airways is committed to the Boeing 777X After making the Boeing 777X announcement, Qatar Airways released a statement which read, “Qatar Airways continuously builds upon its successful fleet program, and this latest announcement demonstrates our investment in quality equipment to deliver our signature Five-Star service.

Qatar Airways has stated that they will not be cancelling their orderbook of 60 B777X aircraft and will be receiving their first B777X aircraft in 2022 with deliveries expected through to 2029 as reported by AirlineRatings.

The CEO of Qatar Airways, Akbar Al Baker stated “It is a very good airplane and we will take them all for fleet replacements”

Qatar Airways is particularly important to the Boeing 777X program, which accounts for over 75% of the backlog value of the Gulf carrier with Boeing and almost 20% of the Boeing 777X.

Qatar Airways Fleet Composition (As at 08 September 2020)

The aircraft was set to be delivered by the end of 2019, but engine issues resulted in delays which now seems like a blessing in disguise as airlines wouldn’t have necessarily wanted to take in these large-capacity aircraft during the Pandemic.

Emirates has the largest orderbook for the B777X aircraft with Qatar Airways taking second place, but that might change as airlines around the world have either swapped larger aircraft for smaller capacity aircraft, cancel orders or defer delivery dates due to the dampened demand caused by the COVID-19 Pandemic.

Boeing 777X Orderbook (As at 08 September 2020)

Qatar Airways Boeing 777 300er

777x

Emirates had earlier ordered 150 of the aircraft type, but this figure reduced to 115 as they swapped it for the B787s and last month it was reported by Bloomberg that the airline was looking to swap more B777X for B787s, depending on the reduction of the orderbook this might mean Qatar Airways becomes the largest operator of the B777X. Pokerchipforum.

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“When Borders Don’t Matter”

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Qatar Airways will retire the Boeing 777, the backbone of its long-haul fleet, by 2024. But that will not be the end for the Triple Seven at Qatar, nor will it be the end of the TPG Award-winning Qsuite business class on the 777. Qatar Airways will replace its current crop of 777s with the newer, bigger 777 models that are known collectively as 777X.

Airline CEO Akbar al Baker told Executive Traveller that the decision is part of a strategy to cut emissions. The 57 Boeing 777s currently operated by Qatar will be replaced by 60 newer Triple Sevens, if the airline will take all the orders it has placed with Boeing.

It should be noted that Qatar has said it won’t take any new planes this year and the next, which leaves just two years for Boeing to deliver 60 new airplanes to Qatar if the airline is to substitute newer 777s for older models one for one as deliveries come in. But 60 wide-body jet deliveries to a single airline in 24 months would be a pace unheard of in commercial aviation — so it’s likely that Qatar’s 777 routes will see a service reduction, or be flown with smaller jets, until all the new 777s are delivered.

“By 2025 we will have just the 777X”, the CEO said.

Qatar has ordered 60 of the larger 777-9 model and 10 of the 777-8, which has a shorter fuselage but longer range.

Boeing says that the General Electric GEnx engines powering the 777X will burn 10% less fuel than the GEnx version installed on current 777s, with correspondingly lower emissions. Because the new 777s are larger and can carry more passengers, emissions per seat could be more than 10% better than current models.

For passengers, the arrival of the new planes could also bring an exciting new addition: a first-class cabin. Qatar Airways has first class only on its Airbus A380s, which are also going to be phased out in the mid-2020s. But al Baker said that some 777-9s will feature a first class with a “very niche product” aimed at the highest end of the market, mostly on European routes.

Like Air France’s La Premiere, the best long-haul first class in the world according to TPG, this cabin would have just four seats at the very front of the 777.

Business class right behind it will be no slouch either; it will be, al Baker said, a new version of the Qsuite currently installed on 777s. Seat width will likely be unchanged since the 777X has the same fuselage cross-section as current models.

In the U.S., Qatar serves — or did before the coronavirus pandemic scrambled airline schedules — Atlanta, Boston, Chicago, Dallas – Fort Worth, Houston, Los Angeles, Miami, New York JFK, Philadelphia and Washington. It also remains, despite al Baker’s frequent threats to leave, a member of the Oneworld alliance together with American Airlines, which makes it easy to earn and use AAdvantage miles on Qatar flights.

Qatar is also getting rid of its Airbus A330s. Al Baker said: “We are retiring the entire A330 fleet now”, he told Executive Traveller. The twin-aisle Airbus A330 does not serve the U.S., where the airline sends mostly 777s and A350s. Its current 777 fleet includes two models: the 777-300ER, which is the one seen most often in the U.S., with 42 seats in business and 316 in economy, and the 777-200LR with the same business class but 217 in economy

Qatar Airways 777x

While outwardly similar to current 777s, the -8 and -9 models will be easy to spot at airports thanks to wingtips that fold up. With an increased wing span, which reduces fuel burn, the new 777s would not fit into many existing gates — so Boeing developed a unique folding wingtip.

Qatar Airways 777x

The 777X made its first flight earlier this year and is scheduled to enter service next year, likely with Lufthansa. No airlines in North America have ordered it, and the 777-300ER will remain the biggest passenger aircraft in scheduled service with any of them.

Qatar is currently the world’s second-biggest operator of the Boeing 777 after Emirates, with 78 aircraft, 21 of which are cargo-only versions. Those freighters, known as the 777F version, are likely to remain in service with the airline past 2024 since the 777X series does not currently include a dedicated freighter to replace it.

Qatar Airways 777x Aircraft

Featured photo of a Qatar Airways Boeing 777-200LR in Los Angeles by Alberto Riva/The Points Guy

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Boeing 777 Qatar Airways

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