Wednesday, January 16, 2013

Public response to New Doha International Airport’s new name… Hamad International!

The media has been buzzing with news that Qatar’s much-awaited New Doha International Airport has been renamed Hamad International Airport and will receive its first commercial passengers on 1st April 2013.

An illustration of Hamad International Airport
It seems the facility will initially be opened to airlines that do not require lounge utilisation, and all other airlines will follow in the second half of the year.

The reason for the staggered approach, in part at least, is a legal dispute between the airport operator Qatar Airways and construction company Lindner Depa Interiors (LDI), with the latter being accused of failing to complete the $250 million fit-out of 19 airport lounges at New Doha Hamad International by last summer.

A new contractor has since been appointed to fit-out the lounges, which will be delivered between June and September 2013, according to Qatar Airways CEO Akbar Al Baker (a shameless plug, but have you read my interview with him, by the way?).

Phase one of the new $15.5bn airport is slated to handle over 28 million passengers a year, with the capacity expected to more than double by the time the airport is fully operational in 2018, reported Arabian Business, which will no doubt lead to plenty of job opportunities too.

The current Doha International Airport handles almost 20 million passengers a year, with over 80 per cent of the passenger traffic generated by Qatar Airways alone.

Although an announcement about the new opening date was expected, the renaming was probably more of a revelation. I decided to ask some of my Twitter followers their opinion and here are some of the responses:
”This change may force Qatar to spend some more cash to invest in the brand awareness to raise. Doha would sound better, I guess.” ‏@serkankarahatay

“Name is immaterial to me, looks awesome though.” ‏@sempir

“What's in a name, said Leo Tolstoy. Precisely.” @SpaceCrazy
What are your thoughts? Is the new name a good or bad move? Leave your comments on this page. And talking about making connections, I’ve created a Facebook page for this blog, which you can visit and like here.

RELATED: Volunteers test Dubai Airport’s new A380 concourse, and voice their opinions (good and bad) on Twitter!

2 comments :

  1. Why not call it Dubai International unless someone named Hamad underwrote the cost.

    steelman MS

    ReplyDelete
  2. Sunil Zephaniah KanaparthiFebruary 4, 2013 at 8:05 PM

    There is nothing wrong in renaming. "What's in a name?" when it is worth it.

    ReplyDelete

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