First They Will, Then They Won’t: Emirates Zig Zags After UAE Bans Passenger Flights

On Sunday Emirates announced a suspension of all passenger flights on Tuesday, March 25. Then later in the day they walked that back announcing that they would continue to fly to 13 countries.

However they will not, in fact, do that because by the end of the day the government of the United Arab Emirates ordered a suspension of passenger flights starting Wednesday.

As per the UAE government’s directive, Emirates will temporarily suspend all passenger services from 25 March 2020. We are very sorry for any inconvenience caused to our customers and travellers. These measures are in place to contain the spread of COVID-19, and we hope to resume services as soon as feasible.

This ban applies to flights in and out of the country, which effectively shuts down both Emirates and Etihad as well, the latter based in the UAE capital of Abu Dhabi.

About Gary Leff

Gary Leff is one of the foremost experts in the field of miles, points, and frequent business travel - a topic he has covered since 2002. Co-founder of frequent flyer community, emcee of the Freddie Awards, and named one of the "World's Top Travel Experts" by Conde' Nast Traveler (2010-Present) Gary has been a guest on most major news media, profiled in several top print publications, and published broadly on the topic of consumer loyalty. More About Gary »

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  1. Given that the governments in the Middle East own both the airports and the airlines, you might have expected more coordination. Oh well.

    The next couple of weeks will be very weird for travel, especially international travel. Within a couple of days, demand will be near zero, but not zero. How do you get somewhere if you really need to get there? It’s not going to be easy, and some places will probably be entirely inaccessible I’m sure we’ll see some interesting blog posts: some of the most mundane activities in the world are suddenly difficult and interesting.

  2. I’m just hoping Emirates will have my flight from BKK back to DXB the first week of may!!!

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