Qatar Airways Boeing 777X: What Should We Expect?

Qatar Airways Boeing 777X: What Should We Expect?

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The 777X is Boeing’s new flagship aircraft, which is badly delayed. The jet was supposed to enter service in 2020, but has been pushed back until at least 2025, due to certification issues. While Boeing is still officially hoping that the plane will enter service in 2025, it seems many airline executives now think 2026 is more realistic.

The 777X plays an important role in the fleet planning of several airlines. I’ve written about the implications of the 777X for both Cathay Pacific and Emirates, and in this post wanted to talk about what this jet means for Qatar Airways. Qatar Airways is known for being one of the world’s highest quality airlines, and the 777X should take the passenger experience to the next level.

Expect Qatar Airways to fly lots of Boeing 777Xs

Publicly, Qatar Airways has 40 Boeing 777-9s on order, and the Doha-based airline should be one of the three launch customers for the jet (Emirates, Lufthansa, and Qatar Airways, have all at some point been referred to as the launch customer, so we’ll see).

It remains to be seen how 777X certification goes, but I’d expect the airline to get the first jet in late 2025 or early 2026, assuming there aren’t further delays (which is probably an unrealistic assumption, given that we’re talking about Boeing). 😉

However, the airline actually has more confirmed 777X orders than that. In March 2024, Boeing revealed that an additional 20 777-9s were ordered by an unidentified customer, and it’s my understanding that the “secret” customer is Qatar Airways.

Qatar Airways has at least 60 Boeing 777-9s on order

That seems to only be the start of Qatar Airways’ plans. We recently learned that Qatar Airways is planning on placing a massive aircraft order in the coming months, expected to be split between Airbus and Boeing. More specifically, the airline is expected to split that order between the A350 and the 777X, though that could change.

The 777X is part of Qatar Airways’ long term fleet renewal, as presumably some of these orders are intended for the 2030s. After all, Qatar Airways has a lot of previous generation 777s that it wants to eventually retire.

Separate from the passenger version of the jet, Qatar Airways has also ordered 34 Boeing 777-8 freighters, though that doesn’t exactly do much for us passengers. 😉

Qatar Airways also ordered the freighter version of the jet

Qatar Airways 777Xs will have new Qsuites

Qatar Airways is known for its Qsuites business class, which is universally regarded as one of the best in the world. What’s exciting is that we know Qatar Airways is working on its next generation Qsuites product, and it should be unveiled soon.

We don’t know exactly when it’s going to be introduced, but I think it’s safe to say that it will be available on all 777Xs. The question is just whether some other jets get the new product before then. Regardless, I suspect that Qatar Airways will once again set the standard for business class.

Expect a new version of Qatar Airways Qsuites

Qatar Airways 777Xs will have new first class

One of the exciting developments we’ve learned in recent months at Qatar Airways is that the airline plans to introduce a new first class, a departure from the previous plan to eliminate first class altogether.

It clearly represents a new direction under the leadership of relatively new CEO Badr Mohammed Al Meer, who is making a lot of positive changes at the airline. While details about Qatar Airways’ new first class plans are limited, the airline is promising to create an experience that combines elements of private and commercial aviation, and I can’t wait to see what the airline comes up with.

I think it’s a given that the 777Xs will be the planes that feature the new first class. What remains to be seen is whether all 777Xs are outfitted with first class, or just a subset of them, which operate the most premium routes.

I’d love to see the airline introduce first class throughout the 777X fleet, so that the airline actually has a substantial first class network for connecting passengers, as you’ll find at Emirates.

I also think that Qatar Airways will really create something special in first class, at last. Historically one of Qatar Airways’ issues has been that the carrier’s business class is so good, while first class isn’t as impressive compared to what the competition offers.

Qatar Airways currently has a small first class footprint — the airline has first class on A380s, as well as on leased 777s that used to fly for Cathay Pacific. On top of that, Qatar Airways markets the forward cabin on some regional flights as first class, but it’s not a “true” first class product.

Qatar Airways’ current A380 first class

I certainly could be wrong, but I’m hopeful the airline may finally put as much effort into first class as business class, in terms of creating an industry leading product. Maybe we’ll see something along the lines of what Cathay Pacific may have planned.

Bottom line

While the timeline remains to be seen, Qatar Airways has a significant number of Boeing 777Xs on order, and I expect this jet to become an even more important part of the carrier’s fleet renewal as time goes on.

As is the case at several airlines, the 777X is intended as a new “flagship” aircraft, given that it’s the largest passenger aircraft in production. We can expect Qatar Airways’ 777Xs to have a new Qsuites business class throughout the fleet, plus a new first class. To me, the big question is how many 777Xs will have first class, and what the product will be like.

What are you expecting from Qatar Airways’ Boeing 777Xs?

Conversations (18)
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  1. Anthony Joseph Guest

    I don't think that Qsuites is a workable option as 777 is much wider than A350 and 787, so 1-2-1 configuration is not efficient use of space.

    I have yet to see a business class seat configuration with door suite on a 777 because the only viable configuration is staggered.

    1. Missing Scurrah Guest

      Qatar already have the QSuite on most of their existing 777s so I'm not sure what you're on about?

  2. ChrisGVA Guest

    New CEO better ?

    Prices sky high, quality of drinks in first and business class going down badly.
    Same about drink in the lounge, 8 years ago QR was in another league with everything served premium.

  3. jcil Guest

    You should expect to wait quite a long time before you are able to fly a 777x on a commercial flight. The chances it never enters service are very, very small, but that chance is now greater than zero, and every year the plane is delayed it increases a bit more.

  4. Ray Guest

    QSuite 2.0 is expected to debut this summer at the Farnborough Air Show. Maybe we can expect next gen First Class to make its debut there, too? Though I’d rather they just hold off until it’s like 2 weeks prior to launch. We don’t need another Lufthansa Allegris

    1. Chris Guest

      Funny to present Qsuite 2.0 and don't refurbish anymore the actual plane with the antic business class 2-2-2.
      Many arlines will be ashamed of that, but not QR.

    2. Terence Guest

      QR Business class/Qsuite is 1-2-1 on the A350 (Wonderful layout)..., haven't been on a Trip7 for a long time, ...is it different ?

  5. RCB Guest

    I really hope Qatar doesn't do first class on wide bodies, it takes up space that should be used for more business class seats. Business class is good enough, and when it's on Qatar is absolutely more than good enough, and the more business class seats the more award availability, so I think keeping things simple is the best strategy. I could be totally wrong but my guess is that the majority of first class...

    I really hope Qatar doesn't do first class on wide bodies, it takes up space that should be used for more business class seats. Business class is good enough, and when it's on Qatar is absolutely more than good enough, and the more business class seats the more award availability, so I think keeping things simple is the best strategy. I could be totally wrong but my guess is that the majority of first class seats on long haul flights are not revenue generating, they are award redemptions or upgrades, so it seems odd to invest in a product that is usually given away for free. Maybe this isn't true for Middle East airlines and they really do get enough paying First Class customers to make it worthwhile, I'm just skeptical.

    1. StevieMIA Guest

      A new first class would work only on 777xs and A380s, maybe they should go the Qantas way and add six first class suites on selected routes with demand or very premium routes. Since Qstar doesn't and won't offer Premium Economy, a first class cabin would give them prestige as one of very few airlines offering first class.

      It's a shame First Class is desappearing all over the world. Allegris seems mediocre, and First class...

      A new first class would work only on 777xs and A380s, maybe they should go the Qantas way and add six first class suites on selected routes with demand or very premium routes. Since Qstar doesn't and won't offer Premium Economy, a first class cabin would give them prestige as one of very few airlines offering first class.

      It's a shame First Class is desappearing all over the world. Allegris seems mediocre, and First class on British Airways is not very outstanding. There's hope Air France Cathay, Qantas or Singapore Airlines come up with an amazing First Class cabin.

      I don't see the need to report on an aircraft that won't be flying anytime soon, these articles about the 777x are useless. Hopefully Qatar gets their planes this decade.

  6. Tim Is So Done Guest

    Awaiting comment on how great the 350-1000 is….

    1. NOLAviator Guest

      maybe if u stopped feeding the troll all the time then the troll would stop coming here to eat

    2. Tim Is So Done Guest

      It doesn’t matter. He comes anyway.

    3. Jacobin777 Guest

      The A350-1000 is a great plane (just flew on it last week and probably around 20 times the past 2 years). That being said, for some reason, its loud in the back of the plane (which I've done once and have done a "walkthrough" a couple of times).

      Regardless, I cant wait to see QR's B77X product.

  7. NW Guest

    Given the issues with the production of Boeing...should the responsible approach not be to recall all planes in the last 10-15years...inspect them with oversight to make sure every nut and bolt is safe...and then release those planes back to fly?
    The cost will be enormous and I'm assuming most Americans won't stand for such things, but releasing another "flagship" seems a case of covering issues with just being louder.
    If anything, claw back...

    Given the issues with the production of Boeing...should the responsible approach not be to recall all planes in the last 10-15years...inspect them with oversight to make sure every nut and bolt is safe...and then release those planes back to fly?
    The cost will be enormous and I'm assuming most Americans won't stand for such things, but releasing another "flagship" seems a case of covering issues with just being louder.
    If anything, claw back all the bonuses paid and pensions to people who were there during the problematic era.

    1. Andrew Guest

      Uh huh....sounds nice....anyways I'm due back on the uh PLANET EARTH

    2. SlothBoy Guest

      The solution is Boeing gets rid of most of their management and replaces them with engineers, not businessmen. The difference is that a businessman sees a missing bolt as cost savings, whereas an engineer might actually fix the problem. Recentralizing their operations back to Seattle might also help.

    3. ConcordeBoy Diamond

      should the responsible approach not be to recall all planes in the last 10-15years

      You basically just described a D-check, which most planes over 7ish-years-old will have already undergone anyway.

      And a lot of airlines are moving to "rolling C-checks" as another measure, such that many aircraft over 4-yrs-old would've had most of their internal parts inspected/replaced as well.

      It's not too far-fetched that Boeing could be paying the cost for some of...

      should the responsible approach not be to recall all planes in the last 10-15years

      You basically just described a D-check, which most planes over 7ish-years-old will have already undergone anyway.

      And a lot of airlines are moving to "rolling C-checks" as another measure, such that many aircraft over 4-yrs-old would've had most of their internal parts inspected/replaced as well.

      It's not too far-fetched that Boeing could be paying the cost for some of that for some carriers, as Sir Tim has already hinted that that's part of their agreed-upon compensation, in several recent interviews.

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ConcordeBoy Diamond

<b><blockquote>should the responsible approach not be to recall all planes in the last 10-15years</blockquote></b> You basically just described a D-check, which most planes over 7ish-years-old will have already undergone anyway. And a lot of airlines are moving to "rolling C-checks" as another measure, such that many aircraft over 4-yrs-old would've had most of their internal parts inspected/replaced as well. It's not too far-fetched that Boeing could be paying the cost for some of that for some carriers, as Sir Tim has already hinted that that's part of their agreed-upon compensation, in several recent interviews.

2
ChrisGVA Guest

New CEO better ? Prices sky high, quality of drinks in first and business class going down badly. Same about drink in the lounge, 8 years ago QR was in another league with everything served premium.

1
Jacobin777 Guest

The A350-1000 is a great plane (just flew on it last week and probably around 20 times the past 2 years). That being said, for some reason, its loud in the back of the plane (which I've done once and have done a "walkthrough" a couple of times). Regardless, I cant wait to see QR's B77X product.

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