Laptop ban would bring less Qatar flights to New Zealand

CEO Akbar al-Baker has stated Qatar Airways will consider cancelling flights to Auckland, if New Zealand bans laptops – and other large electronic devices – on Middle East flights.



The United States, United Kingdom and Australia implemented similar measure earlier this year – and New Zealand is considering following suit.

“Well we will have to then measure if it’s really worth us still flying to New Zealand or not,” said al-Baker.

“It’s performing good but you know if we are imposed with bans which would affect our traffic then we will have to reconsider. It is a very expensive route for us to operate.”

US president Donald Trump’s administration have attempted to restrict travel from some Muslim countries, which has seen demand for US routes drop. Qatar Airways, though insist the subsequent decline in revenue is manageable – but have stated they will remove flights to five US destinations from May onward.

New Zealand Prime Minister Bill English said: “A number of our security partners put those arrangements in place. With this particular proposition there’s a balance between inconvenience for passengers, many of whom live off their laptop, on the one hand.

“But, on the other hand, it’s making sure that the flying is safe.”

Transport Minister Simon Bridges added to Reuters: “The Civil Aviation Authority is assessing the evidence to determine what is appropriate.”