Qatar Airways has made the surprising announcement to suspend its daily Seychelles services from September 1.
The airline attributed the decision to stop flying to Mahe, a route it has served for nine years, to “commercial reasons”, without giving specific details.
Passengers who have made bookings on the affected route will be reallocated on other airlines or given a full refund.
The battle for Seychelles’ travellers, and associate transfer traffic, has intensified in the Gulf following the Etihad-Air Seychelles alliance. The Abu Dhabi carrier invested a 40 per cent stake in the airline in January last year.
In February, Air Seychelles signed a codeshare with fellow Etihad partner Airberlin enabling passengers to fly seamlessly between Germany and Seychelles via Abu Dhabi.
Air Seychelles has also been spreading its wings by securing other codeshare agreements, notably with South African Airways in April.