Qatar Airways eyes Bangalore for passenger operations


By Krupa Vora| Mumbai

After the recent announcement of starting flights to Kozhikode by June 15, 2008, Qatar Airways is now eyeing Bangalore as their destination in India. The airline is currently evaluating the feasibility of the route (Doha-Bangalore) and will apply for passenger operations once the new Bangalore International Airport is operational. “While the User Development Fee (UDF) at the Bangalore International Airport will add to the cost of travelling, the airport will also offer better services and a hassle free journey for passengers. Our strategy is to position Doha as a transit hub. Almost 30 per cent of our passengers disembark at Doha, whereas the remaining 60 per cent take connections to destinations in US, Europe and Africa,” stated Naveen Chawla, Regional Manager, India, Qatar Airways.

The airline is also in the process of augmenting online sales through various promotions. It recently concluded a month long pilot project, whereby passengers booking through the website of the airline availed special fares, as well added double miles to their frequent flyer programme. The carrier will look at introducing the project after conducting a feasibility study. “Currently, the online sales are very low. We are observing the trends in e-commerce market and will develop the segment and promote the online sales more aggressively after a detailed study,” informed Chawla. Apart from this Qatar Holidays, the holiday division of the airline is evaluating the market size in the country and may look at setting up a representation at a later stage.

About Devesh Agarwal

A electronics and automotive product management, marketing and branding expert, he was awarded a silver medal at the Lockheed Martin innovation competition 2010. He is ranked 6th on Mashable's list of aviation pros on Twitter and in addition to Bangalore Aviation, he has contributed to leading publications like Aviation Week, Conde Nast Traveller India, The Economic Times, and The Mint (a Wall Street Journal content partner). He remains a frequent flier and shares the good, the bad, and the ugly about the Indian aviation industry without fear or favour.

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