Qatar Airways and fractional jet ownership provider Flexjet are to form an alliance to offer the Middle East airline’s passengers a seamless charter service throughout North America.
“We are extremely pleased to be launching this new program, and are confident that it is an attractive product offering for individuals and large multi-national companies alike,” said Akbar Al Baker, Qatar Airways’ CEO at an EBACE show press conference yesterday. The Flexjet fleet features Learjet 40 XR, 45 XR, and 60 XR and Challenger 300 and 605 business jets.
“This new alliance gives customers from Qatar and the rest of the airline’s international network the ability to book their travel on Qatar Airways’ commercial service and on-demand private jets to their onward destination within North America with a single phone call,” continued Al Baker.
The agreement also provides members of Flexjet’s fractional ownership program with access to Qatar Airways flights in North America and to the all-Bombardier fleet operated by the airline’s private aviation arm, Qatar Executive (Stand 2027), in the Middle East.
“With a growing focus on the international business market, we have seen an increase in demand for travel to the Middle East and the surrounding regions,” said Fred Reid, president of Flexjet. “Today’s alliance with Qatar Airways–an award-winning airline that shares Flexjet’s passion for high levels of customer service–is an ideal way for us to provide a global aviation solution to our owners. It’s a win-win situation for all.”
The partnership will be managed by Qatar Executive as part of the airline’s premium product portfolio. A dedicated concierge service team will arrange required airline tickets as well as the itinerary, contract and invoice for the charter portion of customers’ trips. “This will provide [Qatar’s customers] with unprecedented access to over 5,000 airports,” Reid said, “sometimes cutting travel time by a factor of four or five.”
Doha-based Qatar Airways provides scheduled service to Houston, Montreal, New York and Washington in North America. Texas-based Flexjet, a division of Bombardier, offers a fractional ownership program and jet card products featuring an all-Bombardier fleet, operated by Jet Solutions.
Flexjet also offers on-demand charter using a diverse fleet of aircraft sourced from premium operators throughout North America, but will use only Bombardier aircraft to service the charter needs of Qatar Airways customers. “We have enough capacity to fulfill a very large demand from both the airline and Qatar Executive, and if we are surprised we will buy more aircraft,” said Reid. “We know where to go for that.”