• Royal Air Maroc Boeing 787-9 Dreamliner CN-RGY

    Royal Air Maroc

    IATA/ICAO Code:
    AT/RAM

    Airline Type:
    Full Service Carrier

    Year Founded:
    1953

    Alliance:
    oneworld

    CEO:
    Abdelhamid Addou

    Hub(s):
    Casablanca Airport

    Country:
    Morocco

As the FIFA World Cup 2022 draws closer (yes, it is strange to be writing that sentence in October), it is not just the host nation’s flag carrier Qatar Airways and neighboring countries’ airlines that are preparing to ferry football/soccer supporters to the event. On Thursday, Royal Air Maroc announced how it would be adjusting its schedule to bring North African fans to the event in support of the Atlas Lions.

The World Cup will kick off on November 20 and run for nearly a month until the final on December 18. Morocco will be playing in Group F, facing Croatia, Belgium, and Canada in turn. In 1986, Morocco made history as the first African team to finish top of its group. However, Royal Air Maroc is not blindly betting on the teams’ prospects to make it through the group round in 2022.

The airline has thus far added flights from Casablanca to Doha up until December 4 – the end of the group round. In total, there will be an additional 3,000 seats. Tickets will sell for a subsidized fixed price of 5,000 Moroccan Dirham ($452.33) return in economy class, nearly half of what tickets on the route usually go for.

Flights will be operated by the carrier’s Boeing Dreamliner aircraft – the 787-8 (274 seats in total, 18 flat bed seats in business class and 256 in the main cabin) and the 787-9 (302 seats in total, 26 flat bed seats up front and 276 standard economy).

The airline stated,

“As the National Carrier, Royal Air Maroc is mobilizing, once again, to accompany the national team and the Moroccan supporters throughout the phases of decisive qualification for the international competition, as it already did in the Russian World Cup in 2018, and for the qualifying matches in the World Cup in the Democratic Republic of Congo, in the Ivory Coast and others.”

A Qatar Airways aircraft

Qatar Airways expects 60% of its passengers to stay in Qatar during the World Cup, compared to the usual 15%. Photo: Getty Images.

Qatar Airways’ temporary operating model

In 2018, as many as 3.02 million people watched the World Cup games live in stadiums across Russia. (The highest attendance ever was in the USA in 1994, with over 3.5 million spectating fans). Qatar Airways Chief Commercial Officer Thierry Antinori has said that he is expecting hundreds of thousands of visitors, potentially a million, for the event. The airline has essentially changed its business model for five weeks, shifting focus away from transfer-heavy hub-and-spoke to more of a point-to-point operation.

Will you or anyone you know be traveling to the World Cup in Qatar? How are you/they getting there? Is it a regular or a specifically added service? Leave a comment below and tell us about it.

Source: simpleflying.com

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