So, how is Qatar Airways handling its current problems?

a row of seats in an airplane

As you may know the state of Qatar has fallen out with a number of its neighbours, ostensibly for supporting terrorism by paying a huge ransom to get some of it’s royal family released by ISYS.

Neighbouring states have closed airspace and offices to Qatar Airways and have cancelled flights to and from the country.

This will cause havoc for me if it’s not fixed by the autumn as I have two big trips on Qatar Airways booked:

  • Cairo – Doha – Bangkok
  • Cairo – Doha – Abu Dhabi

The Cairo and Abu Dhabi flights are cancelled at present.

Unfortunately, Qatar Airways won’t do anything about this until three days before travel. So there is some risk in leaving it until the last minute as availability on other carriers may be spotty. I suspect QR will just want to issue refunds as the fares I have are pretty cheap.

So what to do?

Plan B – I’ve booked an Avios redemption with BA which will get me out of Cairo if I need it – it prevents me sitting around in Cairo for a week. I can cancel 24 hours before hand at no charge, and I hope QR will have decided its plans long before then. It means I am clogging up award availability but there are not a lot of choices.

Flyertalk has a thread on the issue – and contains some stories of people getting re-routed from Cairo, via London, Istanbul or Athens to Doha. Other people report QR pressing them to accept refunds, presumably in an effort to save money paying other airlines to carry their passengers.

I am planning on monitoring the thread on FT and waiting and watching – I am sure more will develop before I have to fly.


  1. Are you sure you are not using your blog to rant about your own problem? Other bloggers in seems to enjoy flying Qatar despite the ban.

  2. I am traveling QR ex CAI next month. This ticket is part of a larger itinerary that leaves next week so I wasn’t comfortable leaving it to T-72. It took many phone calls to QR, but they finally let me drop the CAI – DOH leg of the trip with no charge.

  3. My trip to Helsinki via Qatar Airways is on Monday 26.06. I had to change it through Qatar Airways to British Airways, however I realized yesterday that a visa in transit is needed to my London transit!! With no enough time in hand I purchased new tickets on Turkish airlines. No visa required.
    I purchased qatar airways tickets for 2700 USD. The new tickets are for 5250!! Not fair!

    Very few carriers has Helsinki as a destination, and most of them would require a visa of some type.

  4. travelling from Sydney to the UK with Qatar in early August I decided to cancel my ticket due to unrest and delays faced in Doha. After bring told on the 9.6.17 I would get a full refund they now its only for flights in the Middle East but if I keep my ticket like you say til 3 days before the flight then it’s cancelled Its too late to rebook on another airline.
    Many calls to Qatar expensive and to no avail even though I pressured to speak to a supervisor (none available)’swore they would return my call (Not) seriously lack of care and customer service was ‘ziltch’

  5. I have planned flight from Thailand to Budapest via transit in Doha. They change the transit time in Doha from 2.30hours to 14 hours. Their support did not reply to my questions and requests to make the transit time shorter. I decided do cancel my flight.

  6. Qatar are Ok until something goes wrong and then they treat you like muck on their shoes.
    Food on board is generally unexciting and bland in cattle class.

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