Qatar Airways takes firm measures to respond to Covid-19
Qatar Airways continues to take firm steps in response to Covid-19.
April 02, 2020: Qatar Airways continues to take firm steps in response to Covid-19 (coronavirus). The airline's robust measures include amending its flight schedule, working with governments to take people home, and introducing new policies to ensure the health and safety of staff, and maintaining its vital cargo operations.
In addition, the airline continues to support the state of Qatar's efforts to manage the coronavirus outbreak, and has acquired and transported 500,000 test kits, which arrived in Doha on April 1, and will donate these to local health services.
Qatar Airways group chief executive Akbar Al Baker said, "We are adjusting our flight schedules on a daily basis, and since the outbreak of the virus we have stepped up our already robust hygiene practices. In these efforts, we do not work alone. I am grateful for the support we have received from local and national governments and entities, which we are working in close partnership to overcome this pandemic."
Qatar Airways continues to temporarily hold flights to severely affected countries due to entry restrictions implemented by many governments to prevent the spread of coronavirus. The airline placed a temporary hold on flights to John F Kennedy International Airport from April 1, Madrid Barajas Airport (April 4), and Barcelona El Prat Airport (April 5), with the intention to reinstate flights in line with a return to regular conditions.
Amid Covid-19, Qatar Airways continues to operate more than 150 flights per day and to more than 70 cities globally. The carrier operated four times a day to Heathrow but it dropped the frequency to twice a day from April 1.
The airline is working with governments around the world to maintain a strong schedule of flights, and organising charter flights where needed.
Qatar Airways has implemented robust policies to ensure the health and safety of its passengers and employees. As the current pandemic has escalated, cabin crew have been authorised to wear surgical masks and disposable gloves.
In terms of passengers, Qatar Airways is encouraging social distancing where possible, especially on flights with lighter loads. Distancing is also implemented during the boarding process; ensuring passengers are allocated seats far apart from each other. The airline is also encouraging passengers to follow hygiene practices recommended by the World Health Organization (WHO), such as regular hand washing and refraining from touching the face.
As an airline, Qatar Airways maintains the highest possible hygiene standards, which include the regular disinfection of aircraft, the use of cleaning products recommended by the International Air Transport Association (IATA) and WHO.
Qatar Airways' aircraft feature the most advanced air filtration systems, equipped with industrial-size HEPA filters that remove 99.97 percent of viral and bacterial contaminants from re-circulated air, providing the most effective protection against infection.
In February, the airline supported China supported by donating and flying 300 tonnes of medical supplies in five cargo aircraft to Beijing, Shanghai, and Guangzhou. It also flew six tonnes of free medical supplies to Iran, which was donated by the state of Qatar in March.