PAL, Cebu Pacific, AirAsia suspend China, Hong Kong, Macau flights
MANILA, Philippines – Philippine Airlines (PAL), Cebu Pacific, and AirAsia all expanded their suspension of flights on Sunday, February 2, to cover all flights to and from China, Hong Kong, and Macau, effective immediately.
The airlines' move came after President Rodrigo Duterte ordered an expanded travel ban on foreigners coming from China, Hong Kong, and Macau, amid the novel coronavirus (2019-nCoV) outbreak. (READ: PH expands visa suspension for travelers from China, Hong Kong, Macau)
Filipinos are also temporarily barred from traveling to the 3 areas.
What specifically are the affected flights and until when?
- flights between Manila and Beijing, Guangzhou, Shanghai, Xiamen, Quanzhou (Jinjiang), Hong Kong, Macau (until February 29)
- flights to and from Beijing, Shanghai, Xiamen, Guangzhou, Shenzhen (until March 29)
- flights to and from Hong Kong and Macau (until February 29)
- flights to or from Manila, Kalibo, and Cebu to or from Guangzhou, Shenzhen, Shanghai, Hong Kong, Macau (until further notice)
What can affected passengers do?
- Passengers may either refund their tickets or rebook their trip once the travel ban is lifted. Service fees will be waived for both options.
- Call PAL hotline (+632) 8855-8888 for refund and rebooking if the ticket was bought through the PAL website, contact center, or ticket office.
- Contact your travel agent if the ticket was purchased through a travel agency.
Use the Manage Booking portal on the airline's website to avail of any of the following options:
- Rebook the flight (new flight date within 30 days of original travel date).
- Refund the ticket in full.
- Store the value of the ticket in a Travel Fund for future use.
For guests affected by canceled flights and travel restrictions:
- One-time flight change to a new travel date on the same route within 30 calendar days from original flight time without additional cost, subject to seat availability.
For affected flights to and from mainland China, Hong Kong, and Macau until March 1 that were ticketed before January 28:
- Retain the value of your fare in your AirAsia BIG Loyalty account for future travel with AirAsia.
- Obtain a full refund via support.airasia.com. If the ticket was bought through a travel agent, make the refund request through the agent.
The epicenter of the 2019-nCoV outbreak is the Chinese city of Wuhan in Hubei province.
Across China, the virus had left more than 300 people dead and over 14,300 infected as of Sunday.
The first death outside China was announced in the Philippines on Sunday – a 44-year-old Chinese man who traveled to the Philippines from Wuhan. He was also the country's second confirmed case of 2019-nCoV, and a companion of the first patient, a 38-year-old Chinese woman. – Rappler.com