MIAMI – Qatar Airways (QR) spearheads the recovery of international travel, operating the world’s first fully COVID-19 vaccinated flight today.
QR6421 departed Hamad International Airport (DOH) at 11:00 AM carrying only vaccinated crew and passengers on board, with passengers also to be served by fully vaccinated staff at check-in.
The special flight, which returned to DOH at 14:00, showcased all the measures the airline has put in place to ensure the highest standards of safety and hygiene on board, including its latest innovation, the world’s first ‘Zero-Touch’ in-flight entertainment technology.
The special service was operated by the airline’s most technologically advanced and sustainable aircraft, the Airbus A350-1000, with the flight also fully carbon offset in line with the carrier’s environmental responsibilities.
Comments from Qatar Airways CEO
Qatar Airways Group Chief Executive, His Excellency Mr. Akbar Al Baker said, “Today’s special flight demonstrates the next stage in the recovery of international travel is not far away. We are proud to continue leading the industry by operating the first flight with a fully vaccinated crew and passengers and providing a beacon of hope for the future of international aviation.”
“With aviation being a critical economic driver both globally and here in the State of Qatar, we are thankful for the support we have received from our government and local health authorities to vaccinate our staff, with over 1,000 vaccinations being administered per day.”
Vital Operations amid the Pandemic
The airline’s cargo arm has also played a vital role in maintaining a reliable schedule across our network of destinations. Al Baker noted that since the onset of the pandemic, QR has helped transport more than 500,000 tonnes of medical supplies and delivered close to 20,000,000 doses of COVID-19 vaccines to over 20 countries.
According to today’s QR press release, the airline and airport have also maintained global flight services to support repatriation when others stopped and have steadily rebuilt the airline’s international network to the largest in the world with over 1,200 weekly flights to more than 140 destinations.
The carrier gave away 100,000 complimentary return tickets to healthcare workers and 21,000 to teachers around the world in 2020.
IATA Travel Pass App
Qatar Airways is the first airline in the Middle East to begin trials of the new IATA Travel Pass ‘Digital Passport’ mobile app.
IATA Travel Pass, while on trial at the moment, is said by the airline to “ensure passengers receive up-to-date information on COVID-19 health regulations at their destination country, as well as complying with strict global data privacy regulations to enable the sharing of COVID-19 test results with airlines to verify they are eligible to undertake their journey.”
Featured image: Qatar Airways A7-ANB AIrbus A350-1041. Photo: Roberto Leiro/Airways