An Airline CEO who “gets it”

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In my previous post, I railed against Air New Zealand CEO Rob Fyfe and his arrogant tone when confronted with the fact that his carrier could not be bothered to register its contest for Quebec residents to be eligible…all the while still bombarding us with their inane press releases that would rub our noses in the fact that we could not enter.

Fast forward to last week, when, on June 30th, at a luncheon to mark the launch of Qatar Airways’ thrice-weekly 777 service from Montreal to Doha (from where connections to points throughout the Middle East/Africa/Asia can conveniently be made), QR’s amiable CEO, Akbar el Baker, when advised that a contest being offered on the airline’s website did not allow Quebec residents, his newest source market, to enter…did what has made Qatar Airways the World’s Five-Star Airline…had his team set up a contest that does welcome Quebecers….and, within 7 days, I received a press release that it was up and running.

No excuses…no passing the buck…and this proves that the fee is not so onerous, the paperwork not so overwhelming, that companies cannot be inclusive of the Quebec population.  Do I like the intrusion of government into what should be solely a private sector matter, the Nanny State looking for a cash grab to prop up a deficit-laden provincial treasury, and the incursion of The New World Order into the realm of contests and prizes? No…but any self-respecting company that wants to sell its wares in Quebec can easily register, as Qatar Airways has herewith proven.


It is refreshing in this day and age that there exists an airline CEO like Akbar el Baker, who is hands-on, takes note of customer concerns, and is responsive and respectful of their desires.



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