Qatar Airways cancels flights from several destinations, including SA
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Qatar Airways gave many travellers hope last week when the airline announced the reinstatement of flights from December 12. They announced a double-daily service between Johannesburg and Doha and a daily service between Cape Town and Doha.
Travellers eager to see family, friends or take a connecting Qatar flight to an exotic destination from South Africa soon found out that they would not be able to travel as the airline quickly cancelled resumed flights.
Qatar stopped all flights from seven destinations, including Luanda, Angola; Maputo, Mozambique; Johannesburg, Cape Town and Durban in South Africa; Lusaka, Zambia; and Harare in Zimbabwe, due to the Omicron variant.
Business Insider South Africa reported that the airline had to postpone the restart of outbound passenger services from South Africa due to operational reasons. Travellers took to Twitter to air their grievances.
My family can’t come to South Africa. I can’t go to them . Thank you Qatar for leaving us all stranded 😭— just Nats 🇿🇦💍🇩🇪 (@FrauleinHufkie) December 13, 2021
User @susannadv posted: "Hi @qatarairways If you encourage others to open their borders to South Africa, why did you cancel my flight for next week, 19 December, from Cape Town to Doha? Regards Confused fully vaccinated South African citizen." (sic). Another was upset that they couldn't see their [email protected] posted: "My family can’t come to South Africa. I can’t go to them . Thank you Qatar for leaving us all stranded." (sic)
Another user, @Amir_RN90, called it "shameful"."Shameful. They dont care how stuck we are here in South Africa. While they claim as 5 Star airlines. Nonsense and stupid acts. They must resume operation," he said. (sic).
Shameful. They dont care how stuck we are here in South Africa. While they claim as 5 Star airlines. Nonsense and stupid acts. They must resume operation— Amir Rezazadeh N (@Amir_RN90) December 13, 2021
Many travellers pleaded for the airline to review their decision. User @Venom_84 posted: "Can't go anywhere from South Africa...please revoke the unfair ban on passengers from South Africa...the only thing South Africa did wrong was have brilliant scientists who did the right thing and informed the world about omicron...unlike others." (sic).
User @SabaKJ186 posted: "Omicron is also found in the UK and the the cases are much higher then South Africa but there are 35 flights going there every week.And we South Africans can’t get 1 flight daily ? If this is not discrimination then what is it ??? #liftthetravelban #enddiscrimination #befair" (sic). Qatar is yet to issue a formal release on the postponement.