Qatar Airways’ Privilege Club is riding on the crest of a wave by outstripping the competition and winning a clutch of prizes at the annual Freddie Awards held in Los Angeles. Among an elite gathering of airline industry professionals, Qatar Airways came up trumps with three distinct awards, named after the late British aviation pioneer Sir Freddie Laker.
The awards recognise the world’s best travel loyalty programmes in the aviation and hotel industries as voted by frequent travellers worldwide.
Qatar Airways’ Privilege Club won awards for the Best Elite Level, Best Website and Best Bonus Promotion during 2005. In addition, Privilege Club was named among the top five in a number of other categories.
The Best Elite Level award was for the airline’s Gold Level in the Asia Pacific region. The airline also secured the Best Website award ( www.qmiles.com ) in the same region. The Best Bonus Promotion prize for an airline in Europe, Middle East and Africa was in recognition of the Privilege Club’s fifth anniversary last summer when 1,000 bonus miles were being awarded for each year of membership to those who flew in First or Business Class.
Sponsored by Inside Flyer magazine, the awards are now in their 18th year and are recognised as the most prestigious consumer-generated awards in the loyalty industry as voted by frequent flyers themselves.
Qatar Airways Chief Executive Officer Akbar Al Baker said he was delighted with the latest string of successes for an airline that has moved from a small regional airline to a truly global carrier in less than 10 years.
“These awards signify the hard work our Privilege Club staff have put in, to make the loyalty programme what it is today,” he said.
‘We are a young airline that has achieved so much in such a short few years since Qatar Airways’ relaunch in 1997.
‘Privilege Club is only six years old so it is quite an achievement to earn such recognition in a very short space of time.’
Privilege Club Senior Manager Iain Webster added: ‘We are extremely pleased to have won three awards and placed so highly in several other categories. These awards focus on quality, not quantity, and are voted for by our members on the overall merits of the programme.
‘I would like to take this opportunity to thank our members for their loyalty and ongoing support.’
In addition to the main awards, Qatar Airways claimed second place in the Best Member Communications Frequent Flyer Programme in the Asia Pacific region. The airline also achieved credible ratings in the Best Elite Level programme in Europe, Middle East and Africa, as well as Programme of the Year in Asia Pacific.
At the beginning of the year, Qatar Airways relaunched the website of its Privilege Club programme to provide members with greater benefits and easier management of their accounts.
Through the Privilege Club website, www.qmiles.com members are able to log on and check their account balance online, as well as request reward tickets for travel on Qatar Airways and partner airlines.
Members are also able to review their Privilege Club statements, as well as update their personal profiles and nominate family members into the loyalty club’s family programme.
With a wide range of Qatar Airways destinations to choose from around the world, Privilege Club members have the opportunity to accrue and redeem Qmiles on a global network spanning Europe, Middle East, Africa, Indian subcontinent and the Far East.
Qatar Airways currently operates a fleet of 47 all-Airbus aircraft to 70 destinations from its hub in Doha, capital of the State of Qatar. Daily flights between Doha and Hong Kong were launched in March, marking the airline’s historic 70th route. The fleet size will more than double to 110 aircraft by 2015. The airline plans to acquire up to 80 aircraft, worth in excess of $16billion.
The airline has a strategy of increasing frequency and introducing more non-stop flights to a number of destinations from Doha to provide business and leisure travellers from around the world with improved services.
During the summer, Qatar Airways will open the world’s only dedicated First and Business Class terminal at Doha International Airport offering its frequent travellers in the premium cabins more comfort prior to catching their flight. The new terminal will have a range of services and facilities from exclusive check-in, duty-free, massage treatment rooms, spa, children’s play area and business centre.