By NBF News
Listen to article

QATAR Airways has moved its operations at London Heathrow to the airport's Terminal four (T4). The movement took effect on Tuesday.

The Doha-based carrier's switch from Terminal three follows the completion of a multi-million pound upgrade that sees T4 now offer passengers improved amenities, enhanced baggage facilities as well as a wider selection of restaurants and retail stores.

All Qatar Airways departures and arrivals at London Heathrow will be through T4 and the airline's passengers will benefit from a dedicated spacious check-in area in the terminal's Zone A. Qatar Airways First and Business Class passengers and Gold and Silver Privilege Club card holders will be able to access the terminal's Skyteam lounge.

The Chief Executive Officer Akbar Al Baker said that the airline's new services at T4 would be further enhanced as the airline plans to install a dedicated lounge for its Premium customers. The new lounge will be the first of its kind for Qatar Airways outside its operational hub in Doha and is due to open in the second half of 2011.

He added: 'Qatar Airways' move to Terminal four at London Heathrow allows the airline to further enhance our five-star services for our passengers. As one of our busiest routes, London plays an important part in our overall route network and we are delighted to be enhancing our operation here.

'The move will culminate with the building of our first dedicated lounge for our first and business class passengers outside of our Doha hub. Qatar Airways will bring the best of its award-winning Premium Terminal concept in Doha to London Heathrow,' he said.

Qatar Airways recently introduced its flagship Boeing 777 aircraft for the first time on one of its European routes, operating daily between London Heathrow and its Doha hub. Qatar Airways currently operates six flights a day between the UK and Qatar, four-a-day from London Heathrow and daily from both London Gatwick and Manchester.

In November 2006, the Doha-based airline was the first in the world to introduce a dedicated terminal for its first and business class passenger. The Premium Terminal subsequently went on to collect industry accolades globally for its unique concept and its unrivalled levels of luxury. The same award-winning approach achieved with the Premium Terminal will be employed in the airline's London Heathrow lounge.

By 2013, Qatar Airways plans to serve 120 key business and leisure destinations worldwide with a modern fleet of 120 aircraft. Today, the airline's fleet stands at 93 aircraft, flying to 95 destinations across Europe, Middle East, Africa, Asia Pacific, North and South America.

In a related development, the carrier, for the second year in a row has been selected by readers of the U.S. edition of Business Traveller magazine as the Best Airline in the World for International Travel.

The annual survey of more than 8,000 randomly selected Business Traveller subscribers asked participants to choose their favourite airlines, hotels, airports and other business travel service providers in a total of 59 categories.

The survey consisted of open-ended questions, with no suggested company names or choices provided.

Proving that airlines in the Gulf are setting new standards for high-end service, Qatar Airways surpassed all other carriers in overall service and amenities.

'We are pleased to see that business travellers across the globe are embracing our commitment to delivering the utmost in high service and standards,' said Qatar Airways Chief Executive Officer Akbar Al Baker.

'As we continue to grow our fleet and expand our routes to premier destinations throughout the world, we remain focused on delivering excellence to customers travelling in all cabin classes.'

Qatar Airways is one of a select-few airlines with a Five Star Skytrax ranking for service and was recently elevated to the number three airline in the world in the 2010 passenger survey that involved a poll of over 200 international carriers.

Qatar Airways is the only five star airline operating in Nigeria and flies between Lagos to Doha daily.

Previous Business Traveller wins include the 2008 award for 'Best Airline in the Middle East' and the 2007 award for 'Best Business Class in the World.'

In celebration of this year's recognition, Qatar Airways joined the other best in business travel winners at Business Traveller magazine's annual awards gala dinner held in Los Angeles, The event preceded the December/January issue of Business Traveller, in which all winners will be announced.  Coverage of the gala will be published in the March 2011 issue.

As the global leader in luxury travel, Qatar Airways is undergoing aggressive growth with plans to serve 120 key business and leisure destinations worldwide with a fleet of 120 aircraft by 2013. The airline currently operates a modern fleet of 93 aircraft from its Doha hub to 95 cities across Europe, Middle East, Africa, Asia Pacific, North and South.