Qatar Airways Cargo Farewells its Last ‘Queen of the Skies’

A Qatar Airways Cargo 747 freighter approaches over mountains.
A7-BGB; Photo Credit: N509FZ, CC BY-SA 4.0, via Wikimedia Commons

Qatar Airways Cargo’s Boeing 747F, registration A7-BGB, has touched down for the last time in commercial cargo service. This marks the end of an era as the airline pivots towards greener flying practices.

Arriving from Barcelona, Flight QR8807 touched down in Doha at 15:00 local time on Friday, 01 March, 2024. 

Let’s take a closer look at the journey of this iconic aircraft, its contributions, and Qatar Airways Cargo’s vision for a sustainable future.

Overview of A7-BGB’s Service Record

Since its induction into the Qatar Airways Cargo fleet on September 26, 2017, A7-BGB has been a workhorse in the skies. The jumbo freighter completed over 9,000 flights and accumulating more than 66,000 block hours of service.

This stalwart of the skies has transported nearly 800,000 tonnes of cargo, showcasing its reliability and efficiency.

Deployment History

A7-BGB has been deployed on various routes worldwide, facilitating trade and commerce across continents.

Notably, it has been instrumental in connecting key destinations, ensuring timely delivery of goods and commodities.

Incheon, with 1,165 flights, emerged as the top destination served by the 747 aircraft.

Other prominent destinations include Frankfurt, Amsterdam, and Guangzhou, reflecting the global reach and versatility of Qatar Airways Cargo’s operations.

N509FZ, CC BY-SA 4.0, via Wikimedia Commons
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Operations During the Pandemic

Amid the challenging times of the pandemic, A7-BGB played a crucial role in transporting essential medical supplies, including PPE and medical equipment, across the globe. Its service underscored Qatar Airways Cargo’s commitment to global resilience and support.

Transition Towards Greener Flying

In alignment with evolving customer expectations and a firm commitment to sustainability, Qatar Airways Cargo has embarked on a Next Generation freighter strategy.

This strategy emphasizes fleet harmonization, simplification, and integration of advanced technology to enhance efficiency and reduce environmental impact.

As part of its sustainability efforts, Qatar Airways Cargo has invested in Boeing’s next-generation 777-8F freighter. This is poised to be the most fuel-efficient and environmentally friendly freighter in the industry.

The adoption of advanced in-flight and fuel technologies reflects the airline’s shift to sustainability in flight operations.

Queen of the Skies A7-BGB

Mark Drusch, Chief Officer Cargo at Qatar Airways Cargo, emphasizes the importance of sustainability and efficiency in shaping the airline’s future.

By prioritizing sustainability, Qatar Airways Cargo aims to minimize its carbon footprint while maintaining operational excellence and customer satisfaction.

Introduction of Boeing 777-8F

The Boeing 777-8F represents a paradigm shift in air freight transportation, offering unparalleled efficiency, range, and capacity.

This next-generation freighter incorporates advanced technology systems, airframes, and engines, setting new standards for the industry.

Equipped with state-of-the-art technology, the 777-8F boasts significant improvements in fuel efficiency and emissions reduction over its predecessors.

Its large payload capacity and extended range enhance operational flexibility and enable cost-effective transportation of goods across vast distances.

Comparative Advantages Over the 747-8

Compared to the 747-8, the 777-8F offers superior fuel efficiency, lower emissions, and enhanced cargo capabilities, making it the preferred choice for sustainable air freight operations.

Its innovative design and performance attributes position it as a game-changer in the cargo industry.

Fleet Augmentation with Boeing 777-8F

Qatar Airways Cargo has placed a firm order for 34 Boeing 777-8F aircraft, with options for 16 more, to modernize and expand its fleet.

This strategic investment marks the airline’s commitment to innovation, sustainability, and meeting evolving market demands.

With the introduction of the 777-8F, Qatar Airways Cargo aims to optimize its fleet composition, ensuring operational efficiency and environmental responsibility.

The advanced technology and performance capabilities of the 777-8F will further enhance Qatar Airways Cargo’s competitive edge in the global air cargo market.

About Qatar Airways Cargo

Qatar Airways Cargo, headquartered in Doha, State of Qatar, is a leading international air cargo carrier with a global network of over 70 freighter destinations and 170 passenger destinations.

Leveraging a fleet of 27 Boeing 777 freighters and 230 belly-hold planes, Qatar Airways Cargo ensures seamless connectivity and superior service standards for its customers worldwide.

Long Live the Queen

Qatar Airways Cargo embarks on a new chapter focused on environmental responsibility with its modern fleet.

However, the Boeing 747’s legacy as a revolutionary aircraft and symbol of aviation’s golden age remains unquestionable.

The “Queen of the Skies” will forever hold a special place in aviation history. It will inspire future generations and serves as a reminder of the remarkable advancements in air travel.

Long live the Queen.


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By Len Varley - Assistant Editor 6 Min Read
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