Boeing 787 to visit Qatar next month for 'Dream Tour'
Boeing will commence a six-month international ‘Dream Tour’ with its all-new 787 Dreamliner from December 2011, including a stop-off in Qatar.
The initiative allows customers and partners to experience the 787 firsthand, while media will also be invited to tour the aircraft and speak to Boeing executives.
"The 787 Dreamliner is a game-changing airplane and we're delighted to bring this innovative product to our customers who will soon be receiving their own 787s," said Ray Conner, vice president of sales for Boeing Commercial Airplanes. "This airplane is now changing the way the world flies, and we want to share that excitement with as many people as we can."
The tour will commence with stops in Asia, Africa and the Middle East next month, including the Chinese cities of Beijing, Guangzhou and Haikou between 4th-11th December, Addis Ababa (Ethiopia) and Nairobi (Kenya) between 11th-16th December, and finally a visit to the Qatar Airways headquarters in Doha between 16th-19th December.
As the Middle East launch customer for the Dreamliner, Qatar Airways will receive its first 787 between the first and second quarter of 2012.
“Our Dreamliner will be the most luxurious in the sky, I can promise you that, although at this stage it’s not possible to reveal too much detail. When the time is right, we will showcase the high standards of our 787 with a lot of pride,” Qatar Airways CEO Akbar Al Baker told Dubai-based Aviation Business magazine.
A big reveal of Qatar Airways’ 787 interiors has also been earmarked for ITB Berlin, a forthcoming trade show taking place in March 2012, around three months before the airline’s first 787 delivery.
“This will be a very exciting showcase, because we are pioneering new innovations in luxury air travel. There are fresh developments with our Dreamliner that have never been witnessed in any other aircraft,” added Al Baker.
Al Baker’s claims of having the “most luxurious” Dreamliner in the skies have also received the backing of Jim Albaugh, Boeing Commercial Airplanes CEO, who stated the Gulf carrier is “one of the premium airlines in the world today”.
"When you travel on their airplanes, the service is premium, the equipment they have is the best, and it’s all because of the vision of my good friend Akbar Al Baker,” Albaugh told Aviation Business (click here for the interview).
“Of course, with factors such as the interiors, each airline will customise this according to their own requirements. I think the Middle East airlines probably have more attention to detail than some of the other carriers out there, so Akbar Al Baker and his team have developed something that will feel very different to any airplane that passengers have ever flown on, from the lighting, the roominess, the windows, the seats, everything is going to feel different,” added Albaugh.
The Dream Tour airplane, ZA003, has been retrofitted with special interior features designed to highlight the unique cabin features and performance capabilities of the Dreamliner. The flight test equipment on board ZA003, the third 787 to be built, has been removed and a new interior has been installed, along with a refreshed Boeing livery.