QATAR Airways is launching three weekly direct flights between Doha and Penang starting Feb 6 next year.
Chief Minister Lim Guan Eng said the state-of-the-art Boeing 787 Dreamliner, featuring 22 seats in business class and 232 economy class seats, would fly to Penang on Tuesday, Thursday and Saturday.
He said it was the first direct long-haul flight to the west by an international airline to Penang.
“Currently, there are direct short- haul flights to the east between Penang and Hong Kong, Taiwan and China by other airlines.
“With Qatar coming into the picture, Penang can now open its doors to more international travellers including those from the Middle East, which is an important market.
“This will offer travellers from Penang more global connectivity.
“They can now go to Europe or the Middle East without having to transit in Kuala Lumpur or Thailand,” Lim said during a recent press conference at Komtar.
Qatar Airways, a multiple award-winning airline, travels to more than 150 destinations from 1,000 airports.
The airline makes 14,250 daily departures.
The direct flight to Penang is the second gateway to Malaysia by the airline from Doha.
After making its flight debut in Malaysia in December 2001, it is currently operating a triple-daily service to Kuala Lumpur.