Qatar Airways would recall its licensed Boeing pilots, in order to prepare for the resumption of post-pandemic Covid-19 traffic. Its Airbus A350 passengers will soon benefit from a contactless in-flight entertainment system, controllable by their own electronic device.
According to a letter seen by Sky News, the Qatari national carrier based at Doha airport has contacted its former pilots made redundant since the start of the Covid-19 pandemic, to offer them to resume service aboard its Boeing 777 and 787 Dreamliner. Two aircraft of which Qatar Airways owns 81 (including cargo) and 37 units respectively, only two of which were parked last month according to Planespotters, and which will be used more frequently as traffic resumes. She, therefore, asked her elders to apply as soon as possible.
No details, however, on the conditions these pilots will benefit from if they return to Qatar Airways. Several thousand employees, flight crew, and on the ground, have been made redundant since the onset of the health crisis, especially when its network was reduced to 33 destinations last May.
Last January, the general manager of the group Akbar Al Baker explained that he will continue to take delivery of new planes, after having feared having to freeze these deliveries until 2022. His order book last month counted 50 A321neo including 10 in LR version, 23 additional A350-1000, 23 787-9 additional – and of course the 60 777X not expected before 2024.
The Oneworld alliance company has also announced that it will soon become the first to offer passengers 100% Zero-Touch technology for its Oryx One in-flight entertainment system, on its entire fleet of 53 A350s, as part of its policy of strengthening health measures. This “Zero-Touch” technology, introduced in partnership with the Thales AVANT IFE system, will allow passengers traveling onboard an A350 to pair their personal electronic devices (PED) with the IFE screen in their seat, by connecting to the Wi-Fi Oryxcomms and by simply scanning a QR code displayed on the screen. They will then be able to use their PEDs to navigate and enjoy more than 4,000 options offered by the award-winning Oryx One inflight entertainment system, « limiting the frequency of on-board contact and providing greater peace of mind throughout their journey. « .
Qatar Airways is also set to become “the first airline in Europe and the Middle East and North Africa region” to offer Business and Economy class passengers the option of pairing their personal Bluetooth headphones with the IFE system from their seat in Boeing 787-9s.
For Akbar Al Baker, the introduction of cutting-edge Zero-Touch technology and the ability for passengers to use their personal Bluetooth headsets on board « is an important step in strengthening our already rigorous and strict coronavirus precautions, limiting passenger contact points and thus preventing any possible spread of the virus on board. We hope this will provide additional assurance of safety to air travel, while providing passengers on board with increased confidence that they are enjoying the most advanced customer experience in the air to date. »