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Qatar Airways celebrates ten years of flying to Sofia, Bulgaria

Qatar Airways recently marked a milestone in its history with Bulgaria, celebrating 10 years since its first flight between Doha and Sofia on 14th September 2011.

Sofia flights are currently operated by a Airbus A320 featuring 12 lie-flat business class seats and 120 standard economy class seats.

Qatar Airways’ milestones in Bulgaria include:

  • 2011 – The airline began flying to Sofia 4-times-a-week via Bucharest, Romania using an A320.
  • 2012 – Increased flights to 5-times-a-week
  • 2014 – Start of daily service between Sofia and Doha.
  • 2015 – The flights were tagged with a stop in Belgrade, Serbia.
  • 2016 – Direct flights began increasing to double daily before the start of the COVID-19 pandemic.
  • 2020 – March, Qatar Airways signed a codeshare agreement with Bulgaria Air
  • 2020 – October, flights resumed post-COVID-19, as a tag on service with Bucharest, Romania.
  • 2021 – From 16th December 2021, flights are set to run non-stop again from Doha to Sofia, 4-times-a-week.

Mr. Akbar Al Baker, Chief Executive, Qatar Airways, said:

We have long been proud to serve Bulgaria and connect this beautiful country with our global route network. I knew when we first began flying to Sofia that this was the start of a strong and enduring relationship. Over the years we have witnessed the benefits of our services to Bulgaria that extend well beyond our mission of bringing people together. Our flights have enabled travellers from around the world to experience Bulgaria’s hospitality and cultural history while supporting the export of Bulgarian products to overseas markets. It is a testament to both strong demand and our deep commitment to the country, that we are set to recommence direct flights between Doha and Sofia, from December this year.

Jesus Caballero, CEO, Sofia Airport, said:

We are extremely happy that we are serving the Doha to Sofia route with our partner Qatar Airways. It allows business and leisure customers to explore our beautiful capital of Bulgaria or the seaside cities of Varna and Bourgas thanks to the codeshare between Qatar Airways and Bulgaria Air with flight connections from Sofia. Our long-term partnership with Qatar Airways means so much to us and we look forward to strengthening it especially in 2022 when the FIFA World Cup™ will take place in Qatar.

The flights have also helped boost Bulgarian trade connections over the past decade. Presently, Qatar Airways Cargo offers more than 10 tonnes cargo capacity each week, each way on flights operating on the route.

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Current schedule of Sofia flights is:

  • Doha-Bucharest
  • Departure time: 08:30
  • Arrival time: 13:30
  • Flight time: 5 hours
  • Flight number: QR395
  • Frequency: Daily
  • Bucharest-Sofia
  • Departure time: 14:30
  • Arrival time: 15:35
  • Flight time: 1 hour and 05 minutes
  • Flight number: QR395
  • Frequency: Daily
  • Sofia-Bucharest
  • Departure time: 16:35
  • Arrival time: 17:40
  • Flight time: 1 hour and 05 minutes
  • Flight number: QR396
  • Frequency: Daily
  • Bucharest-Doha
  • Departure time: 18:40
  • Arrival time: 23:15
  • Flight time: 4 hours and 35 minutes
  • Flight number: QR396
  • Frequency: Daily

Starting 16th December 2021, Qatar Airways will once again operate 4-weekly nonstop flights between Doha and the Bulgarian capital. The schedule for these flights is:

  • Doha-Sofia
  • Departure time: 07:30
  • Arrival time: 11:35
  • Flight time: 5 hours and 05 minutes
  • Flight number: QR227
  • Frequency: Mondays, Thursdays, Saturdays and Sundays
  • Sofia-Doha
  • Departure time: 12:35
  • Arrival time: 18:15
  • Flight time: 4 hours and 40 minutes
  • Flight number: QR228
  • Frequency: Mondays, Thursdays, Saturdays and Sundays

Meanwhile, the carrier has also ramped up services to the United States with over 100 weekly flights to 12 destinations. Also, the airline recently celebrated 10 years of flying to Canada and has expanded the use of IATA Travel Pass too. Qatar Airways recently unveiled new Boeing B787-9 Business Class product and has also strengthened its partnership with Alaska Airlines. Recently, Qatar Airways shared details of its strategic partnership with RwandAir and the airline launched flights to Lusaka and Harare.

Featured image by Planespotters

What do you think of Qatar Airways completing 10 years of flying to Sofia, Bulgaria? Let me know in the comments section below.

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