The United Arab Emirates, the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia, the Kingdom of Bahrain and Egypt have announced they have cut all diplomatic ties with the State of Qatar. These four nations allege that Qatar is involved in supporting extremist activities. All air services between these four nations and Qatar have been suspended until further notice.
Airlines that have suspended flights to/from Doha (DOH) Hamad International Airport
– all UAE carriers including Etihad (EY), Emirates (EK), FlyDubai (FZ) and Air Arabia (G9) services from Dubai International (DXB), Dubai Al Maktoum (DWC), Abu Dhabi (AUH) and Sharjah (SHJ)
– Gulf Air (GF) services from Bahrain (BAH)
– Egypt Air services from Egypt
– Saudi Arabian Airlines (SV) services from airports in the KSA. All sea, air and land borders have been closed by the KSA. Qatari registered aircraft both private and commercial cannot fly in Saudi controlled air space. This may affect Qatar Airways services to/from the Europe and North America which may have to change their flight plans.
Statement from Qatar Airways
Qatar Airways has issued a statement to the travel industry date 06 June 2017:
“All QR Flights operating to/from Kingdom of Saudi Arabia (KSA), United Arab Emirates (UAE), Bahrain (BHR) and Egypt (EGY) have been suspended with effect from June 6, 2017 00:00 UTC to June 6, 2017 23:59 UTC. It always has been, and continues to be, Qatar Airways primary objective to ensure the best possible customer service and seamless travel. We apologize for any disruption to travel and we are working to ensure we are back to normal operations as quickly as possible.”
Emirates suspends interline agreement with Qatar Airways (QR)
In a memo issued to the travel industry Emirates has advised it will no longer accept any electronic tickets issued by Qatar Airways (QR)… “Emirates passengers must not be re-booked on QR, and QR documents are not to be accepted on Emirates services until further notice”.
Options available for those affected
For those affected by these travel bans the closest option to travel is via Muscat Airport (MCT) in Oman. Alternative options may also be available via Kuwait (KWI), Amman (AMM), Istanbul (IST) and Beirut (BEY). Please check entry requirements as a visa may be need to enter or transit through these airports.
Implications for the oneworld Alliance
Qatar Airways is a full member of the oneworld Alliance. There is no immediate impact on its membership. Services not affected by the travel restrictions are operating normally with the scope of the oneworld Alliance including code-share and interline agreements.
This is an ongoing situation with more changes expected and further updates will be issued.