Qatar Today - - AFFAIRS > LOCAL -

It was a big day for Qatar Air­ways, which re­ceived the world's largest air­craft, A380-800, from Ger­many; the big bird land­ing at the Ha­mad In­ter­na­tional Air­port on a Thurs­day evening. “A380800 will be the flag­ship of Qatar Air­ways and will be de­ployed on the des­ti­na­tions fre­quented by Qatari na­tion­als like London and Paris,” the air­lines' Group CEO Ak­bar Al Baker told re­porters. “Each air­craft is es­ti­mated to cost $380 mil­lion (QR1.38 bil­lion) and we will de­mand that the company of­fer us dis­counts when we take more such air­crafts," he said adding that three more A380s are ex­pected to be de­liv­ered by Air­bus by the end of this year and the much-awaited A350 will also join the grow­ing fleet of the air­lines around same time. Qatar Air­ways has placed or­ders for ten A380s (eight in 2004 and two in 2010), be­cam­ing the 12th op­er­a­tor of the type in the world. From Oc­to­ber 10, the air­craft (QR 001) will com­mence op­er­a­tions on the London Heathrow route and to Paris later, he added.

CLOCK­WISE FROM LEFT: FC Barcelona play­ers Luiz Suarez (L) and Car­los Puyol with Qatar Air­ways CEO Ak­bar Al Baker in Doha dur­ing the in­au­gu­ra­tion of the first Business Class Air­bus A380; the lounge inside the A380; the first A380 touches down at Ha­mad In­ter­na­tional Air­port

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