Qatar Airways said today it will launch direct flights to London's Gatwick Airport from 22 May with double-daily services from Doha.
Gatwick's boss Stewart Wingate said the new flights bolster the airport's business credentials with Qatar "an important business destination, particularly for those working in finance, infrastructure, oil and gas".
He added: "This new route to Qatar complements Gatwick’s flourishing long-haul network which now covers over 60 direct routes to destinations across the globe."
Qatar Airways said the launch of double-daily services to Gatwick will provide more flexibility and convenience to its passengers travelling to London, and offer up connections for those flying from the UK - with access to its global route network spanning more than 150 destinations.
Qatar Airways' group chief executive Akbar Al Baker said:
The United Kingdom is one of our most important markets, and one in which we have increased our capacity significantly over the years.
We are tremendously excited to add Gatwick as an additional gateway to London, thereby offering our passengers even more choice and convenience when travelling to this magnificent city. As our sixth gateway into the UK, Gatwick will serve as a key new destination for business and leisure travellers alike.
The Gatwick launch will follow the start of services to Cardiff at the beginning of May. Qatar Airways currently serves London Heathrow, as well as Manchester, Birmingham and Edinburgh airports.
The new service between Doha and Gatwick, will be part of the joint business with British Airways, and will be operated by a Boeing Dreamliner 787 aircraft with 22 Business Class seats.
Fellow London airport Stansted has also been looking to make a concerted long-haul charge, with Emirates launching a service to Dubai from the airport in June, and Primera Air starting direct flights to New York, Boston and Toronto from April and May.