DAVAO CITY (MindaNews / 8 March) – Qatar Airways announced that Davao City and Cebu are among the four areas in Southeast Asia where the airline plans to establish direct flights from 2018 until 2019.
The other two areas include Langkawi, Malaysia and Da Nang, Vietnam.
This was announced by Qatar Airways chief executive Akbar Al Baker at the opening day of the four-day 2018 ITB Berlin Convention in Germany where the executive unveiled the company’s aggressive expansion plans by opening 16 new international destinations throughout 2018 and 2019.
ITB Berlin is an international tourist industry trade fair.
The airline’s new destinations include London Gatwick, United Kingdom; Cardiff, United Kingdom; Lisbon, Portugal; Tallinn, Estonia; Valletta, Malta; Bodrum, Antalya and Hatay, Turkey; Mykonos and Thessaloniki, Greece; and Málaga, Spain.
City Tourism Office head Generose Tecson said in a text message on Thursday that it’s good news for the city because the new air connectivity will open more opportunities.
“Tourism establishments will also improve because they will have to upgrade standards, services and facilities in order to be ready for this new market,” she added.
Davao City Chamber of Commerce and Industry Inc. (DCCCII) president Arturo Milan said this is a welcome development not only for the city but also for Mindanao and hopes it pushes through as it will make “travelling to and from the Middle East and Europe more accessible” to Mindanawons.
“This will also trigger more tourists to come to Davao,” Milan added.
The company also announced it will increase the number of flights to Warsaw Poland; Hanoi and Ho Chi Minh, Vietnam; Prague, Czech Republic; Kiev, Urkaine; Madrid and Barcelona, Spain; and Maldives.
“This is a direct reflection of our commitment to connecting travellers across all corners of the world in a way that is meaningful and convenient to them. We are committed to continuing our ambitious growth strategy, in order to be able to provide our passengers with as much choice as possible and to take them anywhere in the world they wish to go,” Al Baker was quoted in the press release.
In a briefer, it said that Qatar Airways was the first Gulf carrier to join global airline alliance, oneworld, enabling its passengers to benefit from more than 1,000 airports in more than 150 countries, with 14,250 daily departures.
There are currently two international routes from Davao City International Airport: Singapore served by SilkAir and budget airline Cebu Pacific, and Kuala Lumpur served by AirAsia, launched on December 21, 2017. (Antonio L. Colina IV / MindaNews)