If Turkish Airlines management thought they had a bad day yesterday, they don’t want to even imagine what today could possibly be like.
Turkish Airlines is facing its biggest crisis ever, courtesy of the U.S> Federal Aviation Administration (FAA). It appears U.S. authorities leave fellow American tourists stranded without a solution. Turkish Airlines is now forced to cancel non stop flights into all of their U.S. Gateways including Los Angeles, San Francisco, Atlanta, Dallas, Miami, Orlando, New York, Washington, Chicago, Boston and more codeshare connections with fellow Star Alliance carrier United Airlines.
Flying from and to the United States of America directly from Istanbul, Ankara or any Turkish Airport is no longer possible. Flying indirectly through another country is highly restricted.
This is a major blow to Star Alliance carrier Turkish Airlines.
Turkish Airlines made Istanbul a major transit point for passenger from one country to a third country. For example Turkish Airlines has excellent connections from the U.S. to Africa, to India, to the Middle East, to Asia and also to Europe and even Australia.
Eliminating this connecting point will be a major blow to international air travel and an opportunity for Gulf based carriers Qatar Airways, Etihad and Emirates to step in.
For Turkish Airlines it may be short to a death sentence and only time will show what is next.
The reason most likely is security concerns in Turkey and reliability of passenger screening at Istanbul Ataturk International Airport.
After one day of total chaos at Istanbul airports and at Turkish Airlines, passengers should get ready for even worse situations today and looking forward.
Per the Federal Aviation Administration’s Notice to Airmen (NOTAM) dated July 15, 2016, U.S. airline carriers are prohibited from flying to or from Istanbul and Ankara airports. All airline carriers, regardless of country of registry, are prohibited from flying into the United States from Turkey either directly or via third country.
Airlines servicing Istanbul for example to Frankfurt would be able to take travelers booked to the United States, as long as their will be a complete new security screening in Frankfurt.