Qatar Airways (QA) has increase the capacity of its flights from Doha to Kochi, in the south Indian state of Kerala, by upgrading the aircraft from a narrow-body Airbus 321 to a wide-body Airbus 330. The A330 will be operational on all 11 flights to and from Kochi connecting to more than 125 destinations around the world via the airline’s hub in Doha, QA announced Tuesday. The announcement coincides with the airline’s tenth anniversary of successful operations to the popular tourist destination in India. Commenting on the upgrade, QA Chief Executive Officer Akbar Al Baker said, “The decision to increase capacity to and from Kochi comes in time to meet growing passenger demand and reflects our aggressive expansion strategy to offer consumers a superior travel experience and seamless connectivity. “India is a very important part of our expansion strategy and this is evident by the operation of 95 flights per week from 12 cities in the India network.” Along with Kochi, QA’s Indian operations cover daily services to Doha from Mumbai, Ahmedabad, Amritsar, Goa, Hyderabad, Kolkata, Kozhikode, Trivandrum, Chennai and Bengaluru, and double daily flights from Delhi. QA operates the A330 flights to Kochi in a two-class configuration of 248 seats in Economy and 36 seats in Business Class. The aircraft features seatback TV screens providing all passengers in both cabins with the next generation interactive onboard entertainment system with a choice of more than 900 audio and video on demand options. “In line with our commitment to this market and the consistent increase in demand from Indian passengers, we will continue to invest in our fleet and offer capacity to the routes where there is a need,” said Al Baker. “There are a significant number of Indian expatriates from Kochi who are working in Qatar and other GCC states. The increase in capacity will enable us to quickly meet the growing demand of these passengers,” he added. Passengers from Kochi can travel to popular destinations including Dubai, Kuwait, Muscat, Bahrain, Abu Dhabi, Salalah, Dammam, Jeddah, London, New York and Chicago via the airline’s Doha hub. At the same time, with the new upgraded service between Doha and Kochi, travellers from around the world can more easily access Kochi. QA has so far launched six destinations this year – Gassim (Saudi Arabia), Najaf (Iraq), Phnom Penh (Cambodia), Chicago (USA), Salalah (Oman) and Basra (Iraq). Over the next few weeks and months, the network will grow further with Sulaymaniyah, Iraq (August 20), Chengdu, China (September 3), Addis Ababa, Ethiopia (September 18), Clark International Airport, Philippines (October 27) and Philadelphia, USA (2 April 2014). Kochi -Doha schedule, 11-times-a-week. Daily Depart Kochi QR 265 at 04:25 hrs, arrive Doha at 06:15 hrs. Depart Doha QR 264 at 20:15 hrs, arrive Kochi at 03:15 hrs next day Mondays, Wednesdays, Fridays and Saturdays:- Depart Kochi QR 267 at 09:30 hrs, arrive Doha at 11:20 hrs Depart Doha QR 266 at 01:20 hrs, arrive Kochi at 08:20 hrs.