Qatar Airways Resuming Saudi Arabia Flights

Filed Under: Qatar

A few days ago the Gulf blockade came to an end, meaning Qatar is restoring diplomatic relations with Saudi Arabia, the United Arab Emirates, Egypt, and Bahrain.

On the aviation front, this means that Qatar Airways can once again use airspace of these countries (decreasing flight time of many routes significantly), and it also means that Qatar Airways can once again resume flights to Gulf blockade countries.

Qatar Airways started using Saudi Arabia’s airspace a couple of days ago, and now the airline has announced plans to resume flights to three destinations in Saudi Arabia.

Qatar Airways’ Saudi Arabia flight details

Within the next week, Qatar Airways will resume flights to three destinations in Saudi Arabia. Saudi Arabia used to be one of Qatar Airways’ biggest markets, so this is huge for the airline in terms of being able to restore global connectivity.

Qatar Airways offers a top notch business class product

Specifically, Qatar Airways will resume flights from Doha to Riyadh, Jeddah, and Dammam:

  • As of Monday, January 11, 2021, Qatar Airways will offer once daily flights between Doha and Riyadh using 777-300ERs; this flight covers a distance of 308 miles
  • As of Thursday, January 14, 2021, Qatar Airways will offer 4x weekly flights between Doha and Jeddah using 777-300ERs; this flight covers a distance of 828 miles
  • As of Saturday, January 16, 2021, Qatar Airways will offer daily flights between Doha and Dammam using 777-300ERs; this flight covers a distance of 140 miles

Qatar Airways’ initial Saudi Arabian destinations

Pre-blockade Qatar Airways served up to 10 destinations in Saudi Arabia, so I’d expect the list of destinations and frequencies to grow from here.

What about other Gulf blockade destinations?

Qatar Airways is resuming flights to Saudi Arabia shortly, but what about flights to the United Arab Emirates, Bahrain, and Egypt? While nothing formal has been announced yet, I’d expect those flights to be resumed in the near future as well.

Saudi Arabia was ahead of the other countries when it comes to reestablishing relations and opening airspace, so I would expect that within the coming days we’ll see similar announcements for the other three countries. One thing this shows us is that Qatar Airways is eager to restart these flights ASAP (I’d imagine cargo is a big motivator here as well).

Qatar Airways had opened a fantastic new lounge in Dubai just shortly before the blockade started, and then it disappeared into thin air

The Qatar Airways Lounge Dubai that “disappeared”

The Qatar Airways Lounge Dubai that “disappeared”

Bottom line

It’s exciting to see the end of the Gulf blockade. Not only are we seeing airspace restrictions lifted, but we’re seeing Qatar Airways resuming service to Saudi Arabia within days. I’d expect flights to other countries involved in the blockade to be resumed within days as well.

This is fantastic news, as this gives passengers more access to one of the best airlines in the world, as Qatar Airways is also a great way to get to Egypt, the UAE, etc.

Are you surprised to see Qatar Airways resuming these flights so quickly?

  1. KSA had now issued multiple health measures for the entry of Qatari nationals arriving via land, sea and air, including compulsary PCR tests and self-isolation for 3 days.

    Since Qatar also requires 7 days quarantine for visitors and returning residents I wonder how passenger loads will be on these flights at all, given all the Covid restrictions. I guess cargo will play a bigger role, and putting their name back on the map.

  2. Nothing to do with this post but google Sriwijaya Air Flight 182. NY times is saying it has crashed. Other media in Australia and UK have stayed it is missing.

  3. I hope that I am wrong. However, the UAE Govt. has continued to express reservations about the Qatari Govt. and its supposed ties to the Muslim Brotherhood. That gives me some pause regarding how quickly airlines will be able to fly between the UAE and Qatar. As I said, I hope I am wrong.

  4. This is a great news that Saudi air travelers get to use World’s best airline – Qatar Airways. Even though air travel is sluggish due to COVID, QR has taken a bold step to start flights to Saudi Arabia. Three Cheers to GCEO H.E. Akbar Albaker, he steers QR in the right direction and always.

  5. I know Bahrain & Dubai are popular getaways for Saudis as well as expats due to their more liberal societies. They don’t call the bridge between Bahrain and Saudi Arabia the Heineken Highway for nothing. Is Qatar also a popular place for some breathing space?

Leave a Reply

If you'd like to participate in the discussion, please adhere to our commenting guidelines. Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

Reminder: OMAAT comments are changing soon. Register here to save your space.