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Qatar Airways - UAE, KSA, Bahrain and Egypt withdraw licenses and close airspace

Qatar Airways - UAE, KSA, Bahrain and Egypt withdraw licenses and close airspace

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Old Jul 21, 17, 3:19 am   -   Wikipost
Please read: This is a community-maintained wiki post containing the most important information from this thread. You may edit the Wiki once you have been on FT for 90 days and have made 90 posts.
 
Last edit by: plunet
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Wiki last updated: 21 July 2017 18:00 UTC

Summary of key traveller experiences and feedback on this forum since Mid-June
  • Policy statement (link) for the travel industry issued 15th June 2017
  • Refund is always an option, but very varied experiences of how quickly the refund is processed, from a few days to "still waiting". Some experiences of passengers being pressurised into taking refunds when this is not necessary if you can wait.
  • If you want to reroute from a closed destination to another middle east destination still served by QR, you might be able to do this as early as 30 days from 1st sector, although we have had reports of rerouting at 6 weeks out.
  • Where QR have to reroute onto other carriers, long haul reroutes typically onto BA, CX and TK seem to be quoted most often. In the Gulf region ME, KU, WY are quoted most often. Although RJ is a OneWorld carrier and should be a parter for QR, they are not accepting QR rerouted tickets.
  • Status of reservations for travel to affected destinations typically changes to "Unconfirmed" 7 days ahead of travel.
  • If your booking was via a 3rd party or agent you probably can't get Qatar to change the ticket until 72 hours before the first sector. 3rd parties and agents seem to be offering refunds rather than rerouting, although there has been some success if you can show them the QR rebooking policy document.
  • There has been a very mixed bag of reports of how QR are handling rebooking. Some people have no luck getting itineraries changed before 72 hours before departure, but others do. So some good advice is to always be polite but if you don't get what you want, then thank the agent for their time and HUACA (hang up and call again) - preferably after you have had a drink and have calmed down, and maybe calling a different office.

Some specific data points from other travellers:
(but there is a lot more valuable information if you can trawl back through the thread)

#753 CAI-LHR-DOH been offered as alternative for ex-CAI 4 days prior to 1st sector.
#772 KUL-DOH-LXR reroute to CAI and IST refused
#792 AUH-DOH-DPS by QR rebooked to DXB-HKG-DPS by CX
#794 Australia-DOH-HBE rebooked as DOH-BEY on QR on 2nd attempt.
#808 CAI>DOH>BOS>DOH>CAI rebooked to KRT and date change
#818 SYD-DOH-CAI changed to SYD-DOH-KWI-CAI, layovers optimed and +Qatar stopover
#830 and #840 Economy ICN-DOH-DXB rebooked onto CX ICN-HKG-DXB
#849 ex-CAI ininaries changed to ex-AMM but needed to HUACA a few times.
#856 CAI-DOH-BKK changed to FCO-DOH-BKK all on QR
#868 DFW-DOH-HBE changed to DFW-DOH-LCA all on QR 2 weeks out.
#906 Unable to get LXR-DOH-HKG-BNE rerouted until 72 hours prior
#927 CAI-DOH-BKK rebooked onto CAI-BAH-AMM on Gulf DOH-BKK (on QR) and return back to AMM
#966 DXB-DOH (award ticket) was changed to DXB-KWI-DOH on Kuwait+QR 48hrs in advance
#966 DOH-CAI (2 award tickets) were changed to DOH-BEY on QR 48 hours advance
#966 CAI-DOH-MUC (paid business) were changed to BEY-DOH-MUC 72 hours advance
#981 HKT-DOH-DWC (J/F tix) change to HKT-DOH-KWI all on QR 10 days out.
#985 ex-LXR ticket rerouted by OTA as CAI-BEY-DOH outside the 72 hr window
#1004 BKK-DOH-CAI in F rebooked as BKK-DOH-BEY in QR F, BEY-CAI in C on ME
#1005 HEL-DOH-DXB rebooked HEL-DOH-MCT on QR and MCT-DXB on Oman once ticket status went to unconfirmed.
#1057 MAN-DOH-DXB rebooked as MAN-LHR-DXB on BA (had to HUACA 3 times)
#1141 Multiple ex-CAI itineraries CAI-DOK-BKK return in J, CAI-DOH-LHR return in J, CAI-DOH-BKK single in F changed to all be ex-KWI. Had to HUACA 3 times.
#1157 LXR-DOH-NRT booked in January, flight changed to CAI-DOH-NRT
#1172 Rebooked CAI-(F)-DOH(J)-BKK to CAI-(C/ME)-BEY-(F)-DOH-(C)-BKK at 77hrs from departure
#1173 Rebooked at QR office HBE-DOH-DPS to HBE-IST-DOH-DPS on TK/TK/QR and improved timing on DOS-DPS segment

Offical guidance from QR website as of mid July:

Passengers who have purchased their tickets from Qatar Airways have the following options to refund their tickets:

For tickets booked on qatarairways.com, they can:
  1. Go to Refund requests;
  2. They can approach their nearest Qatar Airways Office; or
  3. They can call the Qatar Airways contact Centre at +974 4022 0072
For tickets booked through a Qatar Airways Office or through the Contact Centre, passengers can
  1. Contact their nearest Qatar Airways Office; or
  2. Call Qatar Airways Contact Centre on +974 4022 0072
The refund will be made to the original form of payment and the refund will be processed within 14 - 28 days.
Passengers who have purchased their Qatar Airways tickets through a Travel Agency can request their refund from the issuing Travel Agent.
Within the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia, UAE, Kingdom of Bahrain and Egypt please use: https://refundsapp1.blueivysync.com/...er-refund.html

This is a different web form as the Qatar website is blocked from some of these countries.
For further information and FAQs please visit: http://support.qatarairways.com/hc/e...002369667-FAQs
What Happened

On the 6th of June flights from Qatar to Bahrain, Egypt, Saudi Arabia, and the United Arab Emirates (and vice versa) were suspended.

This includes all Qatar flights between Doha and Abu Dhabi, Abha, Alexandria–Borg el Arab, Bahrain, Buraydah, Cairo, Dammam, Dubai–Al Maktoum, Dubai–International, Gassim, Hofuf, Jeddah, Luxor, Madinah, Ras Al Khaimah, Riyadh, Sharjah, Tabuk, Ta'if and Yanbu.

Adding to this at 00:00 (UTC) on the 6th of June restrictions were put in place limiting flights to Doha to one particular corridor through the airspace of Bahrain. This has since been relaxed to two specific corridors through Bahrain airspace with a second corridor up the Saudi Arabia the new addition.

All other flights to other Qatar Airways destinations including the Maldives are still operating although some have delays due to the extended time required to avoid restricted airspace.

There are a couple of routes that are having to make fuel stops in Athens or Muscat but this seems to be dependent on the type of aircraft as well.

Details on the Airspace can be found here - https://www.flightradar24.com/blog/f...ain-and-egypt/

What about my Flights to other destinations?

Flights to Europe, Asia, Pacific and Norte America are operating as per schedule with minimal delays. There is no need to contact QR regarding these services.

Flights between Doha and Souto America are facing delays due to longer times and/or need for a technical stop-over. Flights to GRU and EZE are 2hr to 5hrs longer.

Flight between Doha and Africa/Middle East have longer flights times due to the airspace restrictions. Some routes like Doha to Khartoum have felt the full force of the restrictions with the flight now taking 2hr 30 mins longer than normal.

Qatar has begun to re-time flights to ensure the network continues running smoothly. Changes have been since Monday 12 June 2017, so it is advised to check your flight status and times on the Qatar website.


What about my flight to a suspended destination?

If you are due to fly in the next few days, search for alternative routings and note them down.

24 hours before your scheduled departure time, contact your LOCAL QR office, and ask for their assistance. Advise them that you have found an alternative routing which you would be willing to accept and see if they will book it for you.

If you are due to fly more than 5 days from today, try and relax. Do not panic and please do not call QR as you are blocking the lines for those flying in the next 24 hours. At this stage, Qatar is only offering options to those who are traveling in the next 24 hours.

Currently, people in the thread have suggested that Qatar is rebooking on flights through Muscat, Kuwait, Amman, Istanbul, Mumbai, Beirut, Athens and Tunis.

You can only get a refund if your booking is to one of the destinations listed at the top! (The number of people asking QR on Twitter for a refund of other flights is amazing)

What about other airlines?

Most other carriers in and out of Doha are still operating except for Air Arabia, Air Arabia Egypt, Air Cairo, EgyptAir, Emirates, Etihad, FlyDubai, Rotana Jet and Saudia.

Most other carriers are using the new restricted routes into Doha although provided the aircraft is not registered in Qatar they are allowed to use the Saudi Arabia or Egypt Airspace.

Timeline of Events:


5 June 2017

- UAE, KSA, Bahrain and Egypt withdraw licenses and close airspace
- All MS flights between CAI and DOH was zeroed out
- All GF flights between BAH and DOH closed for sale
- All QR flights between DOH and CAI closed for sale
- All QR staff travel was canceled

6 June 2017

- Airspace Restriction came into effect at 00:00 (UTC)
- All QR flights between DOH and UAE/Bahrain/KSA closed for sale
- QR flights between DOH and MLE still bookable
- QR Charters 3 aircraft from Jeddah to Muscat

7 June 2017
- QR Charters an aircraft from Jeddah to Kuwait

8 June 2017
- Qatar Airways website blocked in the UAE
- Qatar Airways offices in the UAE, Saudi Arabia and Bahrain close

11 June 2017
- Second flight corridor added along the Saudi Arabia Coast

13 June 2017
- UAE Relaxes rules allowing non Qatari registered aircraft to use their airspace to/from Qatar but they are still not allowing flights between the UAE and Qatar from any operators.
- Egypt Relaxes rules allowing non Qatari registered aircraft to use their airspace to/from Qatar. The new rules also allow for non Qatar or Egypt registered aircraft to operate flights between the two countries.

14 June 2017
- Agreement between QR and BA/A3 on reticketing passengers (link below)



Further information:
- QR Travel Alert http://support.qatarairways.com/hc/e...bile_site=true
- QR FAQs http://support.qatarairways.com/hc/e...002369667-FAQs
- QR Charter flights arranged from Jeddah KSA to Muscat Oman http://support.qatarairways.com/hc/e...Muscat-to-Doha
- QR agreement with BA & A3 to reticket their flights http://www.flyertalk.com/forum/qatar...r-help-qr.html
- Political background and latest updates: http://www.bbc.com/news/world-middle-east-40155829
Print Wikipost

Old Nov 8, 17, 10:56 pm
  #1501  
 
Join Date: Nov 2016
Posts: 42
Originally Posted by TiredDoc View Post
QR been giving me the run around. They promised a while a go to reoute at their cost and then a month ago when i decided to finialise the rest of my trip they told me they withdrawn the offer (without telling me)

they do offer to make me pay rerouting fee USD125, reissuance fee HKD80 and all new taxes which is a bugger for BA business flights as I HAVE A DONE3

the last sectors are as follows

BOM-xDOH-DXB

and they suggest BOM-xLHR-DXB - crazy but true, dont mind the transit in London but BA and LHR business taxes are eye watering

Thinking of buying another one way ticket from BOM on a one world carrier if possible and taking them to small claims tribunal.

do they have any defence to get out of this


Does anyone know what the official involuntary rerouting policy is? They want to charge us about USD1,000 for BA/LHR "TAXES" without breakdown or better yet force us to refund the ticket.

Really need some help from the forum

Thanks in advance
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Old Nov 22, 17, 3:46 pm
  #1502  
 
Join Date: May 2008
Location: Manchester
Programs: BA GGL/CCR, Marriott PP, Hertz PC
Posts: 257
Thumbs down Options significantly reduced

Back in January 2017 I booked a MAN-DOH-AUH reservation in J for flights in a weeks time. Yesterday, I contacted the QR UK office and was told that my only options were a full refund (in 5 weeks !!) or rebooking on Turkish Airlines. I had prepared DOH-MCT-AUH alternatives, but was told that I could be reticketed to MCT. But the onward flights to/from AUH would be at my expense. Apparently QR paying for Oman Air flights ceased on Oct 1st. I enquired about a total reroute on BA, but this was also denied. I looked at booking the MCT-AUH flights but they were ~ £500 in J.

I repeatedly asked that I be rerouted on a OneWorld carrier and was told that this was not possible.

In the end I have applied for a full refund and have managed to get a BA CW seat using a joker and an upgrade cert for ~ £1000, saving me £300 on the QR fare.

I had flown and enjoyed QR before, but I will certainly think twice about booking them again.
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Old Nov 22, 17, 6:20 pm
  #1503  
 
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Originally Posted by wenzlydale View Post
I had flown and enjoyed QR before, but I will certainly think twice about booking them again.
I'd of course not book QR to countries where it is banned or those Saudis could collar into banning it. However, I see no problem using QR for rest of the world. I just had a very enjoyable visit to CGK; another one to India coming up in a few weeks.
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Old Nov 23, 17, 12:56 am
  #1504  
 
Join Date: Dec 2014
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Originally Posted by wenzlydale View Post
Back in January 2017 I booked a MAN-DOH-AUH reservation in J for flights in a weeks time. Yesterday, I contacted the QR UK office and was told that my only options were a full refund (in 5 weeks !!) or rebooking on Turkish Airlines. I had prepared DOH-MCT-AUH alternatives, but was told that I could be reticketed to MCT. But the onward flights to/from AUH would be at my expense. Apparently QR paying for Oman Air flights ceased on Oct 1st. I enquired about a total reroute on BA, but this was also denied. I looked at booking the MCT-AUH flights but they were ~ £500 in J.

I repeatedly asked that I be rerouted on a OneWorld carrier and was told that this was not possible.

In the end I have applied for a full refund and have managed to get a BA CW seat using a joker and an upgrade cert for ~ £1000, saving me £300 on the QR fare.

I had flown and enjoyed QR before, but I will certainly think twice about booking them again.
Why would you absolutely fly on a OneWorld airline ? For the miles/tier points ? If QR rerouted you on TK or any non Oneworld airline you could have retro claimed the miles to QR as per the original routing as several already explained it, and even could double dip by crediting the TK flights to TK or another *A ffp...
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Old Nov 23, 17, 9:52 am
  #1505  
 
Join Date: May 2008
Location: Manchester
Programs: BA GGL/CCR, Marriott PP, Hertz PC
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Originally Posted by Matt4 View Post
Why would you absolutely fly on a OneWorld airline ? For the miles/tier points ? If QR rerouted you on TK or any non Oneworld airline you could have retro claimed the miles to QR as per the original routing as several already explained it, and even could double dip by crediting the TK flights to TK or another *A ffp...
I wanted to claim the miles/tier points to my BAEC account and had little confidence that I would be able to do this by flying TK.

Now, if others have done exactly this, I wasn't aware .. if this is the case then why wasn't this information in the Wiki ?
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Old Nov 23, 17, 12:50 pm
  #1506  
 
Join Date: Apr 2012
Posts: 3,943
wenzlydale I am afraid that you are the cause of your displeasure by omitting to tell that you wanted BA miles for the flights. Had you said you would have been told that you could retroclaim them from QR.

As to the information not being included in the Wiki it is not there because it is not relevant. The Wiki is about the political situation and its consequences for all affected passengers not about the niceties of the various FFP programs.

Had you done a simple search of the thread for 'retroclaim' you would find 12 posts of which at least 10 were relevant explanations!
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Old Nov 23, 17, 3:53 pm
  #1507  
 
Join Date: May 2008
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Nothing definitive bought up when forum is searched

Originally Posted by remdk View Post
john1987 the web address is https://qmiles.qatarairways.com/ffpo...RetroClaim.jsf and the e-mail address is [email protected].

That you want to credit AA makes this much more complicated.
QR will probably say that it is an AA problem. I think that AA can only see te flights flown not the original routing so QR need to inform them. But if AA can see the original routing then you should retroclaim original routing from AA.
Further complications could be Which airline is the marketing airline. (Whose flight numbers are on your rservation for each flight) and which FFP number you used for the original booking.

This is very much a grey area so I would suggest that you make retroclaims to both airlines.
I took up your suggestion and searched for retroclaim .. this is probably the most relevant post .. and it doesn’t look at all positive.

I still don’t understand why the Wiki hasn’t been updated since July.
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Old Nov 23, 17, 9:16 pm
  #1508  
 
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Originally Posted by wenzlydale View Post
I took up your suggestion and searched for retroclaim .. this is probably the most relevant post .. and it doesn’t look at all positive.
I believe the correct jargon is "original routing credit". You have to call Qatar, with all the info especially the eticket numbers, and request original routing credit with AA.
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Old Nov 24, 17, 1:11 am
  #1509  
 
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Originally Posted by aktchi View Post
I believe the correct jargon is "original routing credit"
Whatever the terminology, determination is not gained from "a simple search of the thread" until one knows what to search for.
tmac100 and dpfs like this.
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Old Nov 25, 17, 5:53 pm
  #1510  
 
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Originally Posted by LukeO9 View Post
Whatever the terminology, determination is not gained from "a simple search of the thread" until one knows what to search for.
If I google "original routing credit Qatar AA", the top few hits will provide a lot of relevant information. In fact, the second article in the results is titled "How to get original routing credit with AA for canceled Qatar flight".
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Old Nov 28, 17, 6:33 am
  #1511  
 
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Any idea when the political mess between Qatar and its neighbors (KSA, BAHRAIN, UAE and Egypt) will end and we see QR fly back to CAI or DXB?
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Old Nov 28, 17, 7:04 am
  #1512  
 
Join Date: Jun 2017
Posts: 131
No time soon. Even if and when it returns, there are no staff and offices have been returned/cancelled. So an announcement plus 3 months would be likely.
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Old Nov 28, 17, 7:20 am
  #1513  
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Originally Posted by NA-Flyer View Post
Any idea when the political mess between Qatar and its neighbors (KSA, BAHRAIN, UAE and Egypt) will end and we see QR fly back to CAI or DXB?
It's a situation best describe as entrenched. It's unlikely there'll be movement any time soon: it's just one consequence of alarming regional instability.
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Old Nov 28, 17, 8:40 am
  #1514  
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Originally Posted by IAN-UK View Post
It's a situation best describe as entrenched. It's unlikely there'll be movement any time soon: it's just one consequence of alarming regional instability.
Ironically, the QR blockade is actually a decent period of local stability!

M
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Old Nov 28, 17, 11:01 am
  #1515  
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Originally Posted by IAN-UK View Post
It's a situation best describe as entrenched. It's unlikely there'll be movement any time soon: it's just one consequence of alarming regional instability.
I think that the Group of Five (as I like to call them) find themselves in an awkward situation from which there is no graceful exit. The boycott has not had the intended consequences.

Originally Posted by msm2000uk View Post
Ironically, the QR blockade is actually a decent period of local stability!
You are soooooo right!! I don't see Qatar backing down; no country tolerates having terms dictated to it (with a few notable exceptions like Germany and Japan following World War 2). And, as I opined immediately above, The Group of Five is sort of stuck. They don't want to back down, for face-saving purposes if no other; and there's really nowhere for them to go. Stability is exactly what they have now!
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