Iran Crisis Affects Aviation

If you didn’t know tensions between the U.S. and Iran have escalated the past week after a U.S. drone was shot down in international waters, raising tensions between the two countries. The FAA has already prohibited the airspace on Iran’s Persian Coast. The situation is bad for Dubai based carrier Emirates, Abu Dhabi based Etihad and Doha based Qatar Airlines, because of the amount of flights that fly through that area. If tensions escalate further a the airspace could be too dangerous to fly in and that could be disastrous for Qatar, Etihad and Emirates. The route changes affect to overall cost of flying, due to the route changes, more fuel is needed to fly around the airspace. Re routes are only in effect for certain most airlines in the Middle East, and certain airlines with flights there and the surrounding area.
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OMG the gulf 😱😱😱

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Well banning that airspace for all airlines would effectively end all of Qatar Airways operations from what I know, which is not an option for them.

Newark to Bombay is also suspended now, and if the Pakistan airspace restriction continues (along with this), United won’t be able to begin San Francisco to Delhi (unless they fly westbound which the Air India flights don’t do).


The Newark to Bombay flight was suspended before the aircraft departed the airport in Bombay, so the United 77W is being flown from Bombay to Honolulu (which I believe arrived already) and then Honolulu to Newark (a major upgrade for the route)

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The FAA can only ban US carriers. The ban doesn’t affect my company yet.

Had a colleague fly across Iran the other day and he reported ops normal and, as usual, a very good, efficient and friendly ATC service.

Putting geopolitics and aggressive leadership styles aside the Persians are some of the nicest people on the planet I’ve had the pleasure to meet. Never tar an entire country just because of its ‘leadership’ ;D

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Some Indian carriers have also been advised by the government to avoid Iranian’s Airspace (In this context, the southern part of the airspace) in the meantime

Some other airlines also choose to reroute their flight to avoid southern part of Iranian airspace (namely, the western portion of the Gulf of Oman and the air above the Straits of Hormuz). They choose to reroute the route not because of the FAA ban, but for safety as Airlines fear being mistakenly attacked. However, the route across southwestern Balochistan (Pakistani airspace), thence across central or northeastern Iran, is still open and being used by many European/Southeast Asian carriers.


In Singapore Airlines case, even though the airspace across central or northeastern Iran is still open, some of the eastbound flights are being rerouted via Russia, China, and Mongolia. However westbound flights are rerouted via central and northeastern Iran.

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Wow, when you say mistakenly attacked, you mean missiles right? Wow that’s serious

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Most of them are all flying over Iran right now. The issue being UAE airspace is side by side with Iranian. Huge detours are possible but profitability will be massively affected.

As for the other issue, airlines can fly over but like with MH17 airlines didn’t take the risks seriously and still flew over, not pointing an inch of blame but now we would be more careful.

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We don’t want to see another situation like the Malaysia Airlines 777 that got shot down over Ukraine.

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Yeah, as these carriers are taking safety precautions as tensions in the area is pretty high.

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Yes I am aware of that.

I edited it because is was hard for people to understand.

It’s a very high risk flying over Syria too…

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This is not good.

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That’s true, but it might be their only option…

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It can’t be, I think Syria Is ranked like Level 1 (very unsafe) on the board for dangers to aviation. I’ll find the link and link it here.

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I know, that’s why I said “near” Syria…

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Oh okay, misread that. Sorry 🙂

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Well actually quite a few Qatar and MEA planes fly over Syria every day

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In Syria, during the peak of the conflict, tensions were at an all-time high, though they are currently slowly going down, but will take many years to come. Though not the safest airspace to fly over, yet no negative event has unfolded over Syrian airspace, during the most dangerous times, miraculously.

Now as @NeperQiell stated, there are indeed “multiple Qatar Airways and MEA flight crossing over Syria”, with the majority flying over or near Damascus, which is the HUB for Syrian Airlines, which operates daily flights out of there with a rather unusually spotless safety record considering the location and the crisis Syria went through over the course of years, just very recently.

Cham Airlines is also another airline, Syrian that one too, that flies straight into Damascus very often. They have multiple flights daily. And MEA, when flying to Riyadh, find themselves flying over Southern Syria since that is the shortest and most economical route, then again with most airlines passing over Syria, chooses Southern part of the country considering that it is currently the safest area of land within the nation to cross. Airlines are more prone to become a target if flown over northern sections of the nation, even today, though the airspace is very slowly regaining its peace, but it’ll take a long time till Syria is a nation you can fly over, anywhere at or fly to without risking anything of your life.

And for Qatar Airways, well, they are blocked from all corners, with only a few nations in the region allowing them to fly over. With no chance to fly over Saudi Arabia or UAE, therefore, flying over Syria become the only other alternative when flying to/from Northern/Western Africam, South America and from certain Southwestern Countries in Europe. Flying over Syria is the only economical alternative coming from i.e Lagos. Check out QR1408 & QR774, and you’ll see what I mean. But then you see Royal Air Maroc Flight 216 is not flying over Syria… well, they aren’t banned from entering Saudi airspace, giving them the ticket of avoiding Syrian airspace.


So in conclusion, it is still a safety hazard to fly over Syria. Caution is still needed to take, though flying near Damascus as QR, MEA, Cham Airlines does, isn’t a real threat or as big it would be if passing above northern cities in the country. As of now, most airlines around the globe are avoiding Syrian airspace, since it is not internationally considered nor recognized safe, but as for Qatar Airways, they don’t have any other option, flying in from Sao Paulo, Casablanca, Geneva or etc…

So let’s hope, pray and wish that this not happen to Iran. No matter what you think of their standing in this situation, one thing is true, Iranian airspace closure, isolating them as North Korea has become, it would cost airlines, money, money and more money. Economically, it’s a blow from hell at them and for Qatar Airways a taste of fire is like. And surely there are many other routes you can take, but, the longer you fly, the more the airline has to pay, with rising fuel costs, it wouldn’t surprise me that tickets skyrocket too at some point if Iranian airspace were you shut down if ordered by the FAA. Many more airlines would suffer from this greatly, and even though over time, we’d probably get accustomed to this and as would the airlines… we would rather avoid it from happening as Pakistani airspace closure is already a hit on my airlines in many parts of the world.

#PrayForSaferWorld 💕

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Actually, if airlines are not allowed to fly over the Persian Gulf (which many airlines are being forced to re-route to avoid), that would halt their operations. Qatar is in a blockade with Saudi Arabia, the United Arab Emirates, Bahrain, Egypt already.

It wouldn’t be possible to fly over Yemen and Oman if they can’t reach the countries since they’d have to fly over the Persian Gulf to get there 🤷🏻‍♂️

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