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June 6, 2017

How the Qatari crisis affects your travel

Several countries have cut ties with the tiny Gulf state over accusations of supporting extremism in the region.

Air, land and sea links have been halted to the country from Saudi Arabia, the UAE, Egypt and Bahrain.

 

I’ve got flights to Qatar  — can I still go?

Traveling to Qatar is severely affected from Saudi Arabia, UAE, Bahrain and Egypt.

Traveling to/from Qatar from other part of the world is not affected.

As of 0000GMT 06JUN17, updated information as follow. Situation remains fluid therefore additional adjustment is expected.

Air Arabia

All Sharjah – Doha flights cancelled until further notice. G9 operates up to 3 daily flights to Doha

Air Cairo

All Doha flights cancelled until further notice. SM opeates 1 weekly from Sharm el Sheikh, up to 4 weekly from Borg el Arab/Alexandria, 1 weekly from Sohag

Egypt Air

All Cairo – Doha flights cancelled until further notice. MS operates up to 16 weekly flights to Doha

Emirates

All Dubai – Doha flights cancelled until further notice. EK operates up to 7 daily flights to Doha

Etihad Airways

All Abu Dhabi – Doha flights cancelled at least until 30JUN17. EY operates up to 5 daily flights to Doha

Flydubai

All Dubai – Doha flights cancelled until further notice. FZ operates 1 daily from Dubai al Maktoum (DWC) and up to 7 daily from Dubai International (DXB)

Gulf Air

All Bahrain – Doha flights cancelled at least until 30JUN17. GF operates 5-6 daily flights to Doha

Qatar Airways

All flights to UAE, Bahrain, Saudi Arabia and Egypt cancelled until further notice.

Saudia

All flights to Doha cancelled at least until 15AUG17. SV operates up to 10 weekly from Jeddah, 1 daily from Riyadh

Oman and Kuwait, the two remaining Gulf states who have not yet announced their stance on the rift. Until they do, it might be advisable to avoid travelling through all Gulf countries altogether to get back to Doha.  

Passenger flying with Qatar Airways

 
I have already booked flights that transit through Doha after Tuesday. What do I do?

The current crisis only affect passengers originating from Saudi Arabia, UAE, Bahrain and Egypt.

Right now, it is best to wait and see. Qatar Airways has issued the following statement for each concerned country:

Kingdom of Saudi Arabia

Qatar Airways has suspended all flights to the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia until further notice.

UAE

Qatar Airways has suspended all flights to the UAE from 00:00 UTC June 6 (4am UAE, 3am Doha time, June 6) until further notice.

Flights QR1020, QR1021, QR1054, QR1055, QR1034, QR1035, QR 1036, QR1037, QR1018, QR1019, QR1014 and QR1015 to and from the UAE on June 5 will operate as planned and remain unaffected.

Kingdom of Bahrain

Qatar Airways has suspended all flights to the Kingdom of Bahrain from 00:00 UTC June 6 (4am UAE, 3am Doha time, June 6) until further notice.

Flights QR1106, QR1107, QR1108 and QR1109 to and from the Kingdom of Bahrain on June 5 will operate as planned and remain unaffected.

Egypt

Qatar Airways has suspended all flights to Egypt from 04:00 UTC June 6th (8am UAE, 7am Doha time, June 6) until further notice.

Flights QR1302 and QR1318 from Egypt on June 5th will operate as planned and remain unaffected.

All customers booked on affected flights will be provided with alternative options, including the option of a full refund on any unused tickets and free rebooking to the nearest alternative Qatar Airways network destination.

 

Airline waivers in effect as of now

 

In all cases these waivers allow you to refund tickets for free, or let you reroute to the nearest alternative airport served by the airline. There are reportedly long phone waiting time to get through especially on Qatar Airways. I suggest you utilize their online service to try to cancel flights or pay a visit to the local office if you have urgent plans. If you're not travelling in the next 7 days, perhaps you can wait and see how things turned out.

One traveler shared his re-booking experience, he has flight booked to Budapest via Doha from UAE this weekend. Qatar Airways have re-routed his flight now on Turkish Airlines.

 

Expect longer flight on Qatar Airways

All Qatar Airways flights are currently operate as normal except to UAE, Saudi Arabia, Bahrain and Egype. As the ban of Qatari airplane using UAE and Saudi Arabia air space, expect a longer flight on Qatar Airways flight to Africa as the plane has to fly NE before reaching Oman and make its way South. This will add about 30 more minutes of traveling time.

P.S. Doha to Sao Paulo/Buenos Aires flight is making a fuel stop in Athens as it is not allowed to cross Saudi airspace.

Qatar Airways flight to Africa routing

Qatar Airways flight to Africa routing

 

Flight to SE Asia, India, Australia are also affected by not able to fly through UAE air space. These flight are still operate normally but through a slight more North Routing.

Qatar Airways flight to SE Asia Routing

Qatar Airways flight to SE Asia Routing

Qatar Airways flight to India, Australia Routing

Qatar Airways flight to India, Australia Routing

 

Bottom Line

 

This situation with Qatar caught a lot of us off guard. I will update the situation as new development comes. My personal speculation is that the crisis won't last too long so if you have a future flight booked with Qatar Airways, have some patience, wait and see.

If you must get to Qatar from the Middle East region, try to fly from Oman, Kuwait or Iran as for now.

Share me your experience on this so far? Have you been affected by this?

   

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Comments

  1. Jeremy Rogers

    Supposed to be flying into DOH from DFW on 10th July, then catch Etihad airways that night to go to seychelles. You think I should wait about a week before I try and cancel anything?

  2. JeffinMass

    Politics and the airlines. What a shame.

  3. Xavi

    Hi Sam, do you think the flight from/to Buenos Aires will still on? QTR773 and QTR774 today had stops at Athens turning it into one of the longest routes in the world! (Doha-Athens-Sao Paulo-Buenos Aires and back)

    • Sam Chui

      Let’s wait and see.

  4. How will Europe flights route? Flying HKG-DOH-MUC RT in July.

    • Sam Chui

      Alvin, your flights will not be affected. The Europe route currently fly thru Iran as per normal operation.

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