This post contains references to products from one or more of our advertisers. We may receive compensation when you click on links to those products. For an explanation of our Advertising Policy, visit this page.

Qatar Airways is amending an order for 50 Airbus A321neo jets to swap in 10 of the long-range models as a diplomatic feud in the region, a so-called “blockade,” wears on.

The blockade began in June 2017 when neighboring countries Saudi Arabia, United Arab Emirates and Bahrain severed diplomatic relations with Qatar and essentially boycotted any involvement with the nation. Egypt also joined the bandwagon shortly after.

The boycott also means government-owned Qatar Airways has been barred from using any of the blockade nations’ airspace, meaning longer, more circuitous routes for the Doha-based carrier.

Enter the order for 10 A321LR aircraft.

Airbus’ A321LR planes are the larger version of its A320 narrow-body aircraft, a workhorse plane for airlines across the globe and Airbus’ best-selling jet to date. The long-range version can carry up to 206 passengers in a two-class configuration and has a range of up to 4,000 nautical miles, the longest range for a single-aisle plane. Design changes like extra fuel tanks and a higher maximum takeoff weight increase the plane’s range.

“Qatar Airways will use the A321LR to connect Doha to new growing markets where today demand is not sufficient for wide body aircraft or where current narrow bodies (A320/A321) are unable to reach,” the airline said in a statement on Thursday, noting the plane is “ideally suited to transatlantic routes.” The statement added that the new long-range jets would also be used for additional frequencies on existing routes.

The first of the A321LRs will be delivered to Qatar in 2020.

In addition to being restricted from the countries’ airspace, the airline lost about 18 destination cities to the blockade and attributed a $69 million loss in March 2018 to the diplomatic row.

Featured image by Qatar Airways.

Know before you go.

News and deals straight to your inbox every day.

The Platinum Card® from American Express

WELCOME OFFER: 60,000 Points Terms Apply.


CARD HIGHLIGHTS: Delta Sky Club and Centurion lounge access, $200 annual airline fee credit and up to $200 in Uber credits annually

Apply Now
More Things to Know
  • Earn 60,000 Membership Rewards® points after you use your new Card to make $5,000 in purchases in your first 3 months.
  • Enjoy Uber VIP status and free rides in the U.S. up to $15 each month, plus a bonus $20 in December. That can be up to $200 in annual Uber savings.
  • 5X Membership Rewards® points on flights booked directly with airlines or with American Express Travel.
  • 5X Membership Rewards points on prepaid hotels booked on
  • Enjoy access to the Global Lounge Collection, the only credit card airport lounge access program that includes proprietary lounge locations around the world.
  • Receive complimentary benefits with an average total value of $550 with Fine Hotels & Resorts. Learn More.
  • $200 Airline Fee Credit, up to $200 per calendar year in baggage fees and more at one qualifying airline.
  • Get up to $100 in statement credits annually for purchases at Saks Fifth Avenue on your Platinum Card®. Enrollment required.
  • $550 annual fee.
  • Terms Apply.
  • See Rates & Fees
Intro APR on Purchases
Regular APR
Annual Fee
Balance Transfer Fee
See Terms
Recommended Credit
Terms and restrictions apply. See rates & fees.

Editorial Disclaimer: Opinions expressed here are the author’s alone, not those of any bank, credit card issuer, airlines or hotel chain, and have not been reviewed, approved or otherwise endorsed by any of these entities.

Disclaimer: The responses below are not provided or commissioned by the bank advertiser. Responses have not been reviewed, approved or otherwise endorsed by the bank advertiser. It is not the bank advertiser’s responsibility to ensure all posts and/or questions are answered.