While a long way off, in July 2023 Qatar Airways will have up to 34 daily departures from Doha to Africa, its most ever. Unless things change for the worse, which is probably unlikely now, Africa flights would have risen by 14% versus July 2022 and by three-quarters against pre-pandemic July 2019. Africa is, and will remain, a key focus of Qatar Airways’ expansion.
Introducing July 2023
As of August 24th, Qatar Airways plans to serve 30 African airports next July from its Doha hub, one of the world’s leading long-haul airports. While OAG shows that its route network hasn’t changed versus July just gone – they’re exactly the same places – the latest schedules information shows that 15 destinations will more flights. (20 if seat capacity is analyzed instead.)
Algiers, Dar es Salaam, Djibouti, Harare, Khartoum, Kilimanjaro, Lusaka, Luxor, and Maputo are notable for growth, with between 30% and 100% more flights than in July 2022.
Africa will remain Qatar Airways’ fourth-largest continent by flights, behind only Asia, Europe, and the Middle East. However, it’ll leapfrog the Middle East by seats for sale, becoming the third-largest continent, mainly as Middle East capacity has – for now – fallen by 5%. Africa will be responsible for 15% of Qatar Airways’ flights, up slightly over 2022 and double the proportion of 2019.
The B787-8 remains Qatar Airways’ leading type to Africa. Photo: Qatar Airways.
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30 destinations next July
Qatar Airways’ Africa passenger network in July 2023 is broken down as follows. Unless otherwise stated, all are ‘terminator’ services, ie, they don’t continue elsewhere except to/from Doha. seems that there are fewer one-stops, whether triangular or not, than previously, increasing competitiveness by reducing journey times.
- Cairo: 3x daily; B777-300ER (2x), B787-8 (1x)
- Dar es Salaam: 3x daily; 1x daily (B787-8), 1x Doha-Dar-Kilimanjaro-Doha (A320), 1x Doha-Kilimanjaro-Dar-Doha (A330-200)
- Johannesburg: 3x daily (B777-300ER), 4x weekly continuing to Durban in both directions
- Alexandria: 2x daily (A320)
- Kilimanjaro: 2x daily; 1x Doha-Dar-Kilimanjaro-Doha (A320), 1x Doha-Kilimanjaro-Dar-Doha (A330-200)
- Khartoum: 2x daily; A320 (1x), A330-200 (1x)
- Lagos: 2x daily (B787-9)
- Nairobi: 2x daily; B777-200LR (1x), B787-9 (1x)
- Cape Town: 10x weekly (up to 2x daily); A350-900 (1x daily), B777-200LR (3x weekly)
- Abidjan: 1x daily via Accra in both directions; B787-8
- Abuja: 1x daily nonstop in both directions, continuing to Kano (4x weekly) and Port Harcourt (3x); B787-8
- Accra: 1x daily nonstop in both directions, continuing to Abidjan;
- Algiers: 1x daily; A350-900
- Casablanca: 1x daily; B777-300ER
- Entebbe: 1x daily; B787-8
- Harare: 1x daily via Lusaka in both directions; B787-8
- Lusaka: 1x daily nonstop in both directions, continuing to Harare;
- Maputo: 1x daily; B787-8
- Seychelles: 1x daily; B787-8
- Tunis: 1x daily; A330-300
- Zanzibar: 1x daily; A330-300
- Durban: 4x weekly via Johannesburg in both directions;
- Djibouti: 4x weekly; A320
- Kano: 4x weekly via Abuja in both directions; B787-8
- Mogadishu: 4x weekly; A320
- Addis Ababa: 3x weekly; B777-300ER (2x), A320 (1x)
- Luanda: 3x weekly; B787-8
- Luxor: 3x weekly; A320
- Port Harcourt: 3x weekly via Abuja in both directions; B787-8
- Windhoek: 3x weekly; B787-8
Qatar Airways’ Africa route network July 2023. Image: GCMap.
Might Gaborone, Hargeisa, Kinshasa, and Juba materialize in Qatar Airways’ network at some point? They have a better chance if there’s a suitable regional partner the oneworld airline can work with.
Qatar Airways’ very mixed fleet might help, enabling right-sizing. Narrowbodies mean fewer seats to fill on thinner or newer routes, while widebodies enable more cargo, often crucial from Africa. Of course, as traffic picks up, a route – if it is tagged with somewhere else – can be delinked or upgauged to a widebody, growing capacity and revenue opportunities while lowering seat-mile costs.
Where would you like the airline to serve in Africa?