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Gulf rift: Qatar Airways faces double-digit traffic decline, says CAPA

The airline has been forced to suspend its flight to Saudi Arabia, UAE, Bahrain and Egypt

Aneesh Phadnis  |  Mumbai 

Photo courtesy: Twitter handle @qatarairways)
Photo courtesy: Twitter handle @qatarairways)

Due to the ban imposed on Qatar by neighbouring Gulf states, could see double-digit decline in traffic, according to aviation consultancy

has been forced to suspend its flight to Saudi Arabia, UAE, and Simultaneously, airlines from these countries (Emirates, Etihad, Gulf Air and others) have also suspended their flights to Doha.

The restrictions will hit hard as it has virtually no home market and depends heavily on other countries for passenger feeds. According to some estimates the airline occupies only 10 per cent of local

and are Qatar Airways' single largest markets – bigger than even India. is the largest foreign airline in the and fifth overall (after Emirates, Etihad, flydubai and Air Arabia),” said.

has a larger presence in Bahrain, Saudi Arabia, and than airlines from those countries have in Qatar. 

deploys three per cent of its system capacity to countries where it now faces ban. “ Since much traffic is connecting beyond Doha and to much longer flights a double digit impact is feasible at the least. Revenue is difficult to estimate but could broadly follow capacity allocation,” said.

could not immediately reached for comments.

In India,  flies to fourteen cities and has a market share of around four per cent in India's international traffic, according to the Directorate General of Civil Aviation. 

Aviation industry sources believe that may drop fares in the coming days to sustain its bookings. “ Qatar relies on traffic from its neighbouring countries to feed its flights. But, now since, there is a ban on the airline in UAE, and Bahrain, it will depend more on countries like India to fill up its flights to Europe and the US.” 

The airline has informed local travel agents that its flights to the US and Europe are operating normally. “ At we have witnessed an increased inflow of customer calls by 55 per cent since June 5. Most of the calls received are from customers booked with who wish to seek clarity on the refund part or alternate flight options availability. We are already seeing some airlines announcing full refund or an alternative flight to the nearest destination. We are keeping a close watch on the situation and have deployed dedicated customer service team to help with these cases,” said  Balu Ramachandran, Head-air & distribution,

First Published: Thu, June 08 2017. 15:41 IST
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