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Qatar Airways adds 11 weekly London flights

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Qatar Airways has announced a sharp increase in the number of flights it operates from London.

If you have been struggling to find Qatar Airways reward availability because the London to Doha legs were not available, it is worth another look.

Qatar Airways adds 11 weekly flights from London

From London Gatwick:

From 19th June, Qatar Airways will operate two daily flights from London Gatwick instead of one. The British Airways service is also remaining, at least for now, although I don’t understand the point of having two flights to Doha which depart literally a few minutes apart around 2pm.

The new flight will be a morning departure, leaving Gatwick at 9am and arriving in Doha at 5.35pm. It will use a Boeing 787-8 which has the same business class as the A380, which I reviewed on Monday.

From London Heathrow:

From 28th March, Qatar Airways will add a 7th daily service on selected dates. This will be on a Boeing 787-9, so you won’t be getting Qsuite.

It will be an overnight flight from Heathrow, leaving at 9.20pm and landing at 6.05am in Doha. It will operate on Tuesday, Thursday and Saturday.

Heathrow will now see 45 Qatar Airways flights per week, with a total of 59 weekly flights across Heathrow and Gatwick.


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Comments (120)

This article is closed to new comments. Feel free to ask your question in the HfP forums.

  • Roy says:

    It’s worth pointing out that ETIAS (the ESTA-like scheme) and EES (the entry/exit system that involves fingerprinting, etc, and does away with passport stamps) are somewhat separate things – although obviously interrelated – and can be introduced independently.

    Indeed, at various points in the past the EES had been expected to be introduced earlier than ETIAS, so I think it’s premature to assume that EES, with its potential for border chaos, has been postponed just because ETIAS has slipped.

    The one positive development, though, is that the EU do now seem to be talking about the possibility of a phased roll out of EES, so it will very possibly be coming to airports first, with Eurostar and ferries following in a later phase.

    • HH says:

      Doh you just beat my comment! Indeed ETIAS has slipped to 2024 because EES is expected to be delayed to the end of 2023.

  • HH says:

    It’s worth noting that the photo and fingerprints are part of the EU Entry/Exit System still expected to launch by end of 2023 to replace passport stamping. That’s been delayed for operational reasons with installing machines, plus no EU country wanted to introduce these delays in time for the summer holiday rush. ETIAS is just the ESTA-like pre-authorisation that will follow around 6 months after EES goes live.

    I’m also not sure what your sources are that biometrics will have to be resubmitted every time the ETIAS is renewed. My understanding is that it’s a one-off the first time you use EES only.

    • Blair Waldorf Salad says:

      That seens unusual; the EU is generally not a fan of open ended retention of biometric data.

      • HH says:

        They have a time limit on the biometrics only if you don’t travel to the EU at all for three years, then they get deleted. I imagine that won’t apply to most HfP readers 😉

  • Paul says:

    If we wanted pain free travel then we need to have booted remain but we knew what we were voting for and chose self flagellation.

    Why would it be sensible for the EU to set up registration around the U.K.? This is our problem not theirs. More exceptionalism…. Which got us into this almighty mess in the first place

    • Qrfan says:

      The US has global entry registration sites in various places around the world. It’s not an insane suggestion.

      • Blenz101 says:

        When did you last take a ferry or train to the USA which is bottleneck the article mentions?

        • HH says:

          What this article doesn’t mention is that EU countries have been shouting just as loudly that their airports aren’t ready to go live with EES yet, let alone for that to coincide with summer holidays.

          • Mikeact says:

            And between the North and South…Ireland?

          • NFH says:

            No, the UK and Ireland are in the Common Travel Area, which is outside the area to which ETIAS and EES will apply. Therefore ETIAS and EES have no impact upon travel around the island of Ireland.

          • rob keane says:

            “No, the UK and Ireland are in the Common Travel Area, which is outside the area to which ETIAS and EES will apply. Therefore ETIAS and EES have no impact upon travel around the island of Ireland.”

            That’s not true. My understand is one of the reasons it’s being held up is for the thousands of non-UK/non-ROI citizens that currently reside on the island and how they can get a waiver from the waiver when travelling across the land border.

          • jkay86 says:

            I believe ETIAS will only apply to the Schengen travel area, which would exclude the ROI.

      • BA Flyer IHG Stayer says:

        The number of people having their GE interview and biometrics taken at places like DUB or Abu Dhabi is insignificant compared to those that will need biometrics recorded for ETIAS to enter the EU area.

        For this scheme the EU would need to deploy huge staffing and IT resources in the UK at huge cost for what will likely be minimal benefit.

    • lonjams says:

      You really hate this country don’t you? Perhaps, for your own health, you should consider moving somewhere else.

    • Andrew says:

      When foreigners face a delay at Heathrow getting into the UK I regard it as our problem, not the fault of the country they’ve come from. It’s up to the UK to staff our entry points sufficiently to deal with our entry processes so that people don’t face unacceptable waits at the border.

      Similarly if there’s a delay getting into France then it’s the resposibility of the French to sort it out.

  • Dominic says:

    “and there is no easy solution.”

    Well, the easy solution is as described by yourself, Rob! Setting up places one can visit prior to their flight would be a highly logical and, one would think, not overly complicated for an org the size of the EU..

    • Dev says:

      Can the Spanish Embassy just unilaterally set up one of these offices at the Schengen Visa centre in Paddington or something? By all accounts, Spain is desperate to ensure Brits keep on travelling there. The revenue they bring is significant to some parts of the Spanish tourism trade.

      • Steve says:

        Lots of articles recently stating Spain actually doesn’t want British tourists so not sure they are desperate at all.

        • Pogonation says:

          I wouldn’t be surprised if the general public didn’t want British yobbos coming over however those working in tourism and the tourist board probably do. We account for 25% of tourism. That means 650k workers have their bills paid by us and we contribute 3% of their national GDP.

  • Matthias says:

    The point of having 2 LGW-DOH flights that leave a few minutes apart around 2pm is that they arrive into DOH around 11.30pm, which is the main DOH connections window.

  • BJ says:

    Simplest solution would be to rejoin the EU, the country wants it, and both the Labour and Conservative parliamentary parties want it too but neither has the courage to say it. The elphant will be stuck in the room for at least a generation.

    • Barry cutters says:

      Yeah and let’s just forget the point we are a democracy.

      What you mean to say is that you personally want it.

      • NFH says:

        A democracy can change its mind, otherwise it wouldn’t be a democracy. There have already been two referendums. A denocracy should be able to hold a third referendum when the polls show that the electorate has changed its mind since the second referendum.

        • Erico1875 says:

          Of course that’s exactly what the SNP want. As much as they may want another EU referendum, the British Gov can’t have it but deny the SNP as 2nd go at independance

        • LittleNick says:

          And the two referendums were 41 years apart, we’ve not even managed 10 since the 2nd one, maybe in another 30 years you may have a point. We can’t keep having a referendum on the same issue every few years until you get the result you want.

          • BJ says:

            That is irrelevant; since then the people of Scotland have always returned a majority of MSPs to Edinburgh and MPs to London who both support independence and favour holding another referendum. It is a democratic outrage that the UK government does not respect that mandate, and that English-born MPs alone, living in England,representing English constituencies and sitting in Westminster have a de facto veto on the right to self determination of the people of Scotland.

          • LittleNick says:

            @BJ Re Scottish Independence, it’s a democratic outrage people cannot accept the result of the referendum in 2014. Irrelevant the MSP’s/Scottish MP’s opinions, the people of Scotland did decide and voted to remain in the UK and current polling still is in favour of remaining in the UK. England makes up the most MP’s in the UK Parliament as it has the largest share of the population. The alternatives mean a minority can overrule a majority? Is that right? I think it’s wrong that England doesn’t get it’s own assembly/parliament and Welsh/Scottish/NI MPs can vote on English laws only pertaining to England but that’s the system we have.

          • BJ says:

            @LittleNick, since 2014 the Scottish electorate has consistently returned a mandate to ask for the powers to be transferred from Westminster to Edinburgh to hold another referendum. That mandate should be respected by the UK government and the question should be asked again, not vetoed by them or ultimately the UK parliament which it can do anytime due to the numbers. Following devolution The West Lothian Question arose (and then following the 2014 referendum we had Cameron’s crass EVEL) which led to measures being put in place to ensure that MPs representing Scottish seats could not determine the result of legislation relating solely to England and Wales. Combined with the electoral mandate for a further referendum, this means that transfer of powers should be a curtesy and a formality if democracy is to be respected. Westminster should not be able to pick and choose , they should not be able to have their cake and eat it. For me this is about respecting that democracy and not about seeking independence (I voted no in 2014 but would vote yes now). You comments on polling is inaccurate, most polls conducted over the last two years have shown a small majority for yes. My gut feeling from them is that it is around 50/50 so support has grown since 2014 regardless of what the media and unionist politicians may want you to believe. However, this is after ‘don’t knows’ are excluded therefor I believe that were another referendum held now then the answer would be no again albeit with a narrower majority, because most ‘don’t knows’ tend to stick with the status quo. I am not personally in favour if having another referendum at this time but a democratic mandate for one exists and I strongly believe that democracy should be respected.

        • barry cutters says:

          OK lets just keep having a vote till you get the outcome you want.
          That mindset didn’t work out well for Nicola sturgeon.

          At a certain point – the vote remain population need to accept the result and move forward. There is absolutely not a hope in hell we will be re-joining the EU. So would be helpful if you could stop moaning and dragging us backward and support any moves that allow us to try and get ahead and prosper as a nation.

      • ianM says:

        Are leaders supposed to lie to voters in a democracy? I think about a third of people voted for it through misunderstanding and lack of foresight and lies.
        The irony of the NI situation can’t be lost on you.

        • NFH says:

          Very true. Only 37.44% of the UK electorate voted to leave the EU. And none of the UK electorate at any point voted to leave the EEA, of which non-EU Norway, Iceland and Liechtenstein are members. The UK government took the UK out of the EEA without any mandate from the electorate.

          • LittleNick says:

            And by that same metric only 34.71% voted to remain in the EU. Agree with you on the EEA, which is by far where most of our problems come from by not being members. Think you’d have a better case campaigning for EFTA/EEA over EU membership.

        • barry cutters says:

          As important an issue as it is politically. Its not a big deal for 95% of UK population.

          Sorry to say it , but as unfortunate as it is, outside of parts of Liverpool, Glasgow and maybe parts of Birmingham nobody really cares about NI in England Scotland or wales. Especially the further away we get from the troubles.

      • Richie says:

        17.412M as a proportion of the UK adult population isn’t a lot of people.

        • barry cutters says:

          But its the amount that deemed it an important enough topic to actually bother voting.

      • BJ says:

        @Barry, it is indeed what I want but I am also convinced most of the country and most of the MPs want it too. It’s just sad that we are pandering to the wishes of the minority instead of correcting our mistake. I respect that you and many others have valid reasons for wanting to leave, and never to return, to the EU and I have some sympathy with some of those reasons but all things consided I believe leaving the EU was very bad for tve UK and that it is best reversed.

    • Rich says:

      Not according to the article as we never joined Schengen as an EU member and wouldn’t want to either. Therefore we’d still need to use ETIAS if this article is correct, even as an EU member unless we were granted an exemption.

      • John says:

        No, EU citizens wouldn’t need to get advance permission to travel to Schengen regardless of the point of origin.

    • HH says:

      People should remember that it was a non-binding vote since we don’t operate a direct or semi-direct democracy.

      Equally, rejoining the EU is out of the question as we’d never get the special opt-outs we had (euro, Schengen, internal security and justice to name a few). We got those opt-outs by threatening to veto EU treaty revisions, but the tables turn if we’re the ones reapplying for membership.

      • Patrick C says:

        Well you would probably get to keep the pound. not that that’s a good idea as 2022 surely showed quite spectacularly. The other quabbles are really UK rightwing populism. But frightened islanders can’t imagine live without borders. It is funny when some british people visit and you can just walk them over a border and there is no one that cares besides them 😉

    • Brian says:

      very unlikely given we are about to join CPTPP…

  • NFH says:

    As others have correctly pointed out, ETIAS (€7 e-visa) is separate from EES (fingerprints/photographs). The two have always had independent go-live dates, with ETIAS no earlier than EES.

    Personally I’m looking forward to EES, because some EU ports of entry and exit (e.g. Eurotunnel, ferries and small airports) fail to operate separate immigration lanes for EEA and non-EEA passengers. When I enter or exit the EU, usually from or to the UK together with a lot of non-EEA passengers, I shouldn’t have to queue slowly behind these non-EEA passengers. The infrastructure required for EES will make it difficult to continue using the same lanes for EEA and non-EEA passengers.

    Article 10 of Regulation (EU) 2016/399 states “Member States shall provide separate lanes, in particular at air border crossing points in order to carry out checks on persons, in accordance with Article 8. Such lanes shall be differentiated by means of the signs bearing the indications set out in Annex III“.

    • Brian P says:

      I think that’s optimistic!

      Everytime i go to the US I use the US citizen line, I’m neither a US citizen, not a green card holder. You’ll find many groups do not fit neatly in your segmentation.

      Besides after ETIAS there is no reason that UKC won’t be able to use e-gates, then they’ll be in front of you again in the queue!

      • NFH says:

        ETIAS has nothing to do with e-gates. If you’re referring to EES, then EES e-gates will have different functionality (fingerprints and photographs) from the existing e-gates for EEA citizens.

        Regarding your US analogy, yes, some EU airports such as Madrid are particularly lenient towards British citizens using their manned EU immigration lanes. But with EES, this will no longer be possible because of the fingerprinting and photographing requirement for non-EEA citizens.

        • Brian P says:

          the finger prints are taken with ETIAS to check you aren’t a criminal and check against europol etc… they are then stored against your passport.

          they are not being used to check you who you are on your passport to allow entry.

          given 95% traffic after the initial registration from the UK will be return visitors, it’s unlikely you would build an egate with that functionality, when it’s not going to be used.

          much more likely to have a few registration desks or register in alternative location.

          this is my understanding, unless you have a source referring to separate egates?

          • NFH says:

            No, that’s inorrect. ETIAS has nothing to do with fingerprints. EES, which has a different (probably earlier) implementation date from ETIAS, requires fingerprints.

    • M Jones says:

      Oh dear poor you. Imagine having to share your Egates with other country citizens! Spare a thought for us Brits who have to share our Egates with EU/EEA, Swiss, Canadian, US, Australian, NZ, Singaporean, South Korean and Japanese citizens!
      Seriously for EU citizens to be annoyed that UK citizens can use Egates there sometimes is incredibly hypocritical.

      • NFH says:

        Sharing e-gates between EU and non-EEA nationals would be fine. But EU citizens shouldn’t have to queue behind non-EEA citizens while they are quizzed about the reasons for their trip, are asked to show a return ticket, and their passport stamps are checked for compliance with the 90/180-day rule. That’s why there are supposed to be separate lanes for EEA and non-EEA nationals.

        And of course I sympathise with the many British citizens who knew and warned that travel to the EU would become more difficult, and who voted against this outcome, but whose warnings were misleadingly dismissed as “project fear” by a mendacious leave campaign.

        • M Jones says:

          I understand your points. However do you see that British nationals entering the EU always have to answer these questions, whereas EU nationals avoid them entering the UK as they still use E gates just as they did pre Brexit? Not reciprocal.

          This coming from a Remain voter who also agrees with your point above that the UK Government never had a mandate to leave the EEA. I hope to see us back in the EEA soon.

          • NFH says:

            I only partially agree with you, because e-gates exist only at some airports and Eurostar terminals. When travelling by Eurotunnel or ferry or via small airports, there are no e-gates. UK Border Force does question EU nationals where there are no e-gates, and sometimes refuses entry for spurious reasons. For example, UK Border Force refused entry to an EU grandmother who was coming to the UK to look after her UK-resident grandchildren, as UK Border Force considered this to be “work”. UK Border Force treats EU nationals far worse than EU border guards treat British citizens.

        • M Jones says:

          I disagree. I think both are equally as bad. Did you see Sweden are trying to deport an elderly women with Alzheimer’s back to the UK? I don’t condone UK either with that grandmother, nor that poor Italian girl coming over to babysit for a relative. Whole thing is ridiculously cruel on both sides.

          I seem to always have issue when entering the EU in Sweden, Netherlands or Norway..I get grilled and eyed up like a criminal. Compare that to Portugal or Italy where it’s an Egate then an automatic stamp after and no questions whatsoever. Kinda makes Schengen a bit of a mockery based on the suffering levels of scrutiny depending on the entry country. But my experiences in Sweden and Netherlands in particular are hardly reciprocal, when on the return flights their citizens shoot through the UK egates in seconds without any questioning.

          • NFH says:

            Yes, it is very unfortunate that the EU countries visited most by Brexiteers allow easy entry, while the EU countries visited least by Brexiteers are more stringent. The difference in approach is probably because high-income cold countries attract more people wanting to earn money whereas low-cost hot countries attract more people wanting to spend money.

          • M Jones says:

            Very interesting point. Never thought of it that way.
            The problem is that I as a remain voter who needs to travel to different countries in the EU on a regular basis get treated like a criminal entering the northern colder countries, and realise what a pain it all is now.
            Brexiteers fly into Spain, Cyprus and Portugal and very little has changed so do not see any downside.

    • Alex Sm says:

      What is the UK equivalent of ETIAS for the EU citizens and what is the time for its introduction? Maybe this is the cause of the delay as they need to be synced for reciprocity reasons?

      • M Jones says:

        The UK will be introducing an ETA in 2025. My hope is over the next two years UK and EU can engage in further bilaterals to exempt each other from such schemes. Unlikely but this latest NI deal gives me hope of further good faith discussions to benefit the citizens and businesses of both sides. Lets see.

        • NFH says:

          The UK should impose reciprocal ETA fees for citizens of countries that charge British citizens for a similar e-visa. So citizens of ETIAS countries would pay EUR 7, US citizens would pay USD 21, Canadians would pay CAD 7, Australians would pay AUD 20 and New Zealand citizens would pay NZD 52. This would have the added benefit that these nationalities would pay in their own currency. Other nationalities should pay a flat GBP 5.

          • M Jones says:

            Maybe they should but that would probably be hard to administer.
            Australia however does have a reciprocal system, UK citizens are exempt from their fee as they are eligible for the fee evisitor.
            I suspect a flat fee of around £10 will apply.

    • NFH says:

      I was wrong about Eurotunnel, which we used at the weekend. The French police aux frontières do operate separate EU/EEA/CH and non-EU/EEA/CH lanes in both the Folkestone and Calais terminals. But at exit controls in Calais, there was only one lane of each, and lots of UK-registered cars were presenting British passports in the EU/EEA/CH lane, delaying genuine EU/EEA/CH nationals. EES should hopefully put a stop to this.

      • M Jones says:

        Yes. Hopefully the UK does the same. I should not have to wait behind EU nationals in the queue entering the UK when they get questioned! British citizens should be expedited through, hopefully ETA puts an end to this.

  • The Original David says:

    So which one of ETIAS or EES will mean that UK passports can use the e-gates again to enter the EU? Once they turn that back on again then the rest of us won’t care how long the queues are in the manual processing lane.

    • NFH says:

      You won’t be using the same fast e-gates as EEA passengers. With EES, you will be using new more onerous e-gates for non-EEA passengers, which will scan your fingerprints and take your photograph.

    • NorthernLass says:

      Each EU member country decides for itself who can use its e-gates on arrival, it’s nothing to do with which passport/visa you hold. Spain, Portugal and possibly a couple of others have already been doing it for UK visitors.

      • NFH says:

        True. Spain and Portugal allow British citizens to use e-gates, but don’t forget that this is in addition to subsequent manual passport stamping by a border guard. With EES, there will be dedicated e-gates for non-EEA citizens, which will scan fingerprints and take photographs instead of passport stamping.

        • LittleNick says:

          My understanding is that fingerprints will only be scanned initially on the first time, are you saying it will require fingerprint scanning every time on entry?

    • Brian P says:

      Neither. You can already use egates in various locations including Madrid and Portugal.

      But EEI should own the rest up..

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