Why Fly Private?
Diamond Agreement by Qatar Executive offers the private jet solution to new air travel challenges
by Marc Almagro
“The Diamond Agreement program simplifies private jet travel, offers flexibility at a fixed price, and allows customers to tailor flights to their requirements.”
“With a current operating fleet of 18 state-of-the-art private jets, Qatar Executive is capable of offering the program to all its loyal clients and prospective customers.”
Qatar Executive claims its Diamond Agreement program was developed to simplify private jet travel, offer unrivalled flexibility at a fixed price, and allow customers to tailor flights based on their needs and requirements. The program offers the same benefits as both the ad hoc (on-demand) and the jet cards programs.
Given the current global situation and the ever-changing travel requirements, travelers are looking for versatile, high-quality services from a reputable and financially secure operator. “Therefore, we anticipate a demand for the Diamond Agreement program to rise, and we look forward to offering our premium customers an unparalleled private flying experience,” says Mark Hardman, Acting Executive Vice President of Qatar Executive, the Doha-based business jet subsidiary of Qatar Airways.
Qatar Executive focuses on operating mid, long and ultra-long range flights, where demand is constantly growing worldwide. In March 2020, it saw a 30 per cent growth in operations, due to its commitment of taking people home safely and securely. During the April-May period, demand slightly decreased, although, Qatar Executive won global market share. “In June 2020, our growth started increasing again with international borders easing entry restrictions,” Hardman shares.
“We have already started receiving a high volume of inquiries on the Diamond Agreement program, from both corporate and individual clients,” Hardman reveals. “With a current operating fleet of 18 state-of-the-art private jets, including seven Gulfstream G650ERs, five Gulfstream G500s, four Global 5000s and two Challenger 605s, we are capable of offering the program to all our loyal clients and prospective customers.”
Customers can purchase a minimum of 50 hours flight time on Diamond Agreement without any associated membership fees. The all-inclusive and fixed-hourly rates cover both flight hours and taxi time. The pre-purchased Diamond Agreement hours have no minimum annual usage and no maximum carry-over, making it truly flexible, a boon in the current climate. Customers are also offered guaranteed availability for reservations booked from just 72 hours in advance.
Qatar Executive sits with every client on the program to understand their requirements, from notice periods to one-way or return flying, and preferred jet aircraft. Thereafter, the price is generated for them, tailored to their requirements. The program is not limited to a specific region. Moreover, as an international private jet charter service provider, Qatar Executive can fly clients between any two destinations they wish to visit.
The impact of the pandemic is not unique to Qatar Airways alone, Hardman points out, as it has caused an unprecedented impact to the aviation industry as a whole and all airlines globally were badly affected. Some, unfortunately, had to cease operations totally after succumbing to financial duress, he adds.
“While most airlines have suspended their operations, Qatar Airways is one of the very few airlines that has remained in operation during this period. Our mission is to take people home safely during the pandemic. Our passengers and customers have been our highest priority throughout this crisis.” Qatar Airways has worked closely with various government bodies and embassies around the world including France, Germany, Australia, Ireland, Canada, the US and UK to bring people home safely.
“The safety, security and good health of our passengers and employees is our highest priority. Qatar Airways works closely with global and national authorities to implement the latest advice and guidance on COVID-19 and operate our services accordingly.”
Massive & Global
Qatar Airways commercial flights continued to maintain a global network that never fell below 30 destinations, the company says. It emerged as the largest international carrier in April and May 2020, both in terms of available seat capacity and passenger kilometers transported. Qatar Airways’ over 1.3 billion revenue passenger kilometers (RPK) during the month of April accounted for 17.8 per cent of the global market, the company says, more than triple its nearest competitor and more than the next four airlines combined.
“We take great pride in being able to safely carry passengers home around the world throughout the crisis,” underscores Hardman. Qatar Airways carried nearly 45 per cent of international travelers to and from Australia in April, including more than 30,000 passengers between Doha and Sydney, Melbourne or Perth according to figures from the Australian government Bureau of Infrastructure, Transport and Regional Economics (BITRE).
In May, Qatar Airways was again the top and largest global carrier for capacity in passenger and cargo traffic, according to IATA report, with over 600 million RPKs during the month accounting for 8 per cent of the international passenger traffic market.
Care & Protect
“We understand that the current situation is a very challenging one, especially for people who are stranded overseas and unable to return to their families,” Harman says. “Therefore, we pride ourselves on being able to continue carrying passengers safely home during the Covid-19 crisis.” Qatar Airways has taken close to two million people home, flown more than 70 million kilometres, and operated over 17,000 flights (largest airline capacity worldwide) and over 300 special charter flights, carrying over 80,000 passengers.
Qatar Airways has been in a unique position to closely monitor global passenger flows and booking trends to confidently begin planning the gradual reintroduction of additional flights and destinations to its network.
On 1 July, it relaunched 11 more destinations – its largest single day of restarts – which it dubbed ‘Take-Off Wednesday’. By end-July, Qatar Airways’ network has expanded to over 450 weekly flights and more than 70 destinations, the company says.
The industry will likely see some long-term changes in view of the pandemic. It is far too early to anticipate what changes will become more permanent as these will be driven by the availability of vaccinations, consumer behaviour, airport and health protocols. Entry restrictions around the world are the biggest impediment to many people resuming travel. As entry restrictions around the world begin to ease, we expect passenger demand to increase gradually.
“We believe that travel will steadily return, limited by entry restrictions rather than customer confidence. People will want to travel again, experience the world, and meet friends and family as well as business travel restarting,” Hardman says.
“In many ways, the restrictions have made people realize how precious the ability to travel really is, and was perhaps was taken for granted. We anticipate supply will closely match demand as airlines have available aircraft to meet this measured return of passengers. We believe fares will remain competitive as demand returns, and people return to the skies.”