Latest News and Developments


26 March 2020 11.46 - New Commercial Policy (V7.3) on all Routes and SAA Suspends Domestic Flights in Support of South Africa’s National Lockdown

South African Airways (SAA) has announced its decision to suspend all its domestic flights with effect from Friday 27th March until 16th April 2020 (inclusive). The decision came after the South African government announced a nation-wide lockdown for 21 days aimed at combatting the spread of the Coronavirus (COVID-19).    Last Friday, SAA announced the suspension of all intercontinental and Africa regional flights until 31 May 2020.

Click here for further information

25 March 2020 16.26 - Air New Zealand International schedule from 30 March 2020 

Air New Zealand wish to advise that our international schedule will be significantly reduced as a result of the impact of Covid-19 on travel demand

Click here for further information

25 March 2020 - Thai Airways - Temporary Suspension of International Flights

For full information click here

25 March 2020 - UAE government directives on air travel

On 23 March, the UAE government directed the suspension of all passenger flights into the country within 48 hours. This is a measure to protect communities from the further spread of COVID-19. In line with this directive, Emirates is temporarily suspending all our passenger flights from 25 March 2020.

24 March 2020 - Airline updates 

Cathay Pacific


HKG, effective from 25 March 2020 (00:00 HKT), non-Hong Kong residents will be denied entry into Hong Kong.
https://www.cathaypacific.com/cx/en_GB/travel-information/travel-preparation/travel-advisories/notice-regarding-travel-restrictions.html

Emirates

https://e.emiratesagents.com/2OIE-10RH2-5E15TLVKC8/cr.aspx

Etihad Airways

Click here for the latest media release 


Qantas

Transits via Australia – After Australian Border Force not allowing transits of non-Australian residents on Friday, this was lifted on Saturday allowing for transits up until 12pm on 24th March.

Further details can be found here.

Cancellation of EK flights – Further to the announcement of the cancellation of EK flights, those bookings that are impacted on an QF ticket should refer to the Qantas International Flight Cancellation Policy

Transits via SIN – On Sunday SIN announced that transits would no longer be allowed via Changi Airport. This decision impacts our QF1/2 service. It has been confirmed that the QF1/2 will route via DRW instead of SIN. Customers will stay on the flight at DRW as there isn’t the customs facility at the airport. The flight will leave from Sydney at 2205 until the end of service. Further timings are to be confirmed. These details should start pulling through into PNR’s.

Cancellation on QF flights – as announced last week, Qantas will be suspending its international service from later on this week until the end of May. The last service on the QF1 (SYD – LON) is 26th March and QF2 is 27th March. Availability on Qantas flights are now very limited.

All the latest policies can be found here.

Singapore Airlines

In view of the heightened risk of importation of COVID-19 cases into Singapore, please be advised that from 23 March 2020, 2359 hours (Singapore time), all short-term visitors, from anywhere in the world, will not be allowed to enter or transit through Singapore.  Only Singapore Citizens, Permanent Residents and Long Term Pass holders will be permitted to be accepted on flights to Singapore.
https://www.ica.gov.sg/covid-19

Kenya Airways

Kenya Airways is suspending all international flights - this comes into effect from midnight Wednesday, 25th March 2020

Click here for more information

VS

Click here for latest news from VS

23 March 2020 - 10:45 - Singapore restrictions - Covid-19 update on Singapore Airlines

In view of the heightened risk of importation of COVID-19 cases into Singapore, please be advised that from 23 March 2020, 2359 hours (Singapore time), all short-term visitors, from anywhere in the world, will not be allowed to enter or transit through Singapore.  Only Singapore Citizens, Permanent Residents and Long Term Pass holders will be permitted to be accepted on flights to Singapore. 

For more information, click here

20 March 2020 - 13:00 - SAA SUSPENDS ALL INTERNATIONAL FLIGHTS UNTIL THE END OF MAY 2020

South African Airways (SAA) has announced that it will immediately suspend all international operations until 31 May 2020 in response to a government travel ban aimed at stopping the transmission of the Coronavirus (Covid-19).

For more information, click here.

19 March 2020 - 09.14 - New Zealand strengthens travel restrictions

The New Zealand Government has further strengthened travel restrictions, closing the borders to non-residents in an attempt to stop the spread of COVID-19. These restrictions come into effective from 23:59 on Thursday 19 March 2020 (NZT).

For more information click here

16 March 2020 - 15.26 - Virgin Atlantic takes drastic action to safeguard future against Covid-19

▪ Virgin Atlantic will reduce its schedule, prioritising core routes based on customer demand. This change amounts approximately 80% reduction in flights per day by 26 March. As a direct consequence it will be parking approximately 75% of its fleet by 26 March and at points in April will go up to 85%.

▪ Owing to restrictions to international travel, the airline is reducing services to focus on core routes, depending on customer demand. This will be subject to constant review as the situation evolves. Its Heathrow-Newark route has been permanently terminated.

▪ Staff will be asked to take eight weeks unpaid leave over the next three months, with the cost spread over six months' salary, “to drastically reduce costs without job losses”.

▪ The airline said it has the support of the Balpa and Unite unions and the workforces they represent in agreeing to support unpaid leave, alongside other extensive measures.

16 March 2020 - 09.15 The Foreign and Commonwealth Office advise against all but essential travel to all of Indonesia

The Foreign and Commonwealth Office advise against all but essential travel to all of Indonesia. There is an ongoing global outbreak of coronavirus (COVID-19) and cases have been confirmed in Indonesia. The Government of Indonesia requires that travellers from countries in which the World Health Organisation (WHO) has evidence of local transmission of COVID-19 (see WHO situation reports) should self-isolate for 14 days on arrival in Indonesia. Further travel restrictions in Indonesia or elsewhere may be introduced with little or no notice and may limit your ability to travel within Indonesia or to return to the UK.

16 March 2020 09.15  - New Zealand announces measures to prevent the spread of COVID-19

Click here for more information from the New Zealand Tourist Board - https://mailchi.mp/tnz/covid-19-an-update-from-tourism-new-zealand?e=48a95d3dff

15 March 2020 - Update on travel to Sri Lanka

The Sri Lankan Government has decided that people arriving from the UK, or having travelled through the UK, will not be allowed to enter Sri Lanka from midnight on 16 March (1830 GMT 15 March).

15 March 2020 - 12:47 - Confirmation UK citizens can still enter the UAE

Effective March 17, UAE authorities have temporarily suspended the issuance of all entry visas. This does not apply to those passengers holding diplomatic passports or
those who have had visas issued prior to March 17.It also does not apply to passengers who hold passports from the following countries.  These passengers can continue to travel to and from the UAE although may be subject to additional screening.


Australia, Austria, Belgium, Brunei, Bulgaria, Canada, Croatia, Cyprus, Czech Republic, Denmark, Estonia, Finland, France, Germany, Greece, Hong Kong, Hungary, Iceland, Ireland, Italy (from Rome only), Japan, Latvia, Liechtenstein, Lithuania, Luxembourg, Malaysia, Malta, Monaco, Netherlands, New Zealand, Norway, Poland, Portugal, Romania, San Marino, Singapore, Slovakia, Slovenia, South Korea, Spain, Sweden, Switzerland, 
The Vatican, United Kingdom and The United States of America.

15 March 2020 - 11.45 - Singapore Advisory 

As of 16 March 23:59 local time, all travellers entering Singapore with a recent travel history to ASEAN countries, Japan, Switzerland and the UK will be issued with a 14-day stay at home order. They will also be required to provide proof of where they will serve the order, for example a hotel or private residence. They might also be swabbed on arrival to test for the virus.

Source - FCO

15 March 2020 09.35 - UAE restricts Visas

The UAE has announced new restrictions on issuing of visas. We understand that from 17 March, the UAE will temporarily suspend the issuance of all visas, with the exception of diplomatic passport holders. Visas will no longer be issued on arrival although those who have a visa issued before that date should be allowed to travel; visitors will be tested on arrival and be required to self-isolate for 4 days. It is not currently clear whether these changes apply to all visitors or those coming from a specific risk-based list of countries.

Source - FCO

15 March 2020 09.35 - Australia enforces 14 day self-isolation 

From midnight on 15 March, all passengers arriving in Australia from all other countries – with the exception of the Pacific Islands – are required to self-isolate for 14 days. You should comply with any additional screening measures put in place by the authorities.

Source - FCO

14 March 2020 - 20.10 - US to add UK and Ireland to European travel ban

The UK and Ireland are to be added to America's European travel ban over the coronavirus pandemic, Donald Trump has confirmed.

The new restrictions will begin at midnight on Monday, eastern standard time (0400 GMT).

American citizens will still be allowed to return home to the US but they will be "funnelled" through selected airports, said Vice President Mike Pence.

Source - Sky News more to follow.

14 March 2020 - 16.32 - Entry into Canada

"All travellers arriving in Canada are being asked to self-isolate for 14 days as a precaution. Boats and cruise ships carrying more than 500 people will be banned from docking at Canadian ports until July. The number of airports receiving international flights are being limited to allow for enhanced screening of incoming travellers. You should check with your airline before you travel. You should comply with any additional screening measures put in place by the authorities."

Above statement from gov.uk

14 March 2020 - 16.14  - Suspended – Turkish Airlines Stopover Free Accommodation Service  

Please note, our Stopover Free Accommodation service in Istanbul has been temporarily suspended as a precaution to Corona Virus(COVID-19) as of 13th of March, 2020.

Until further notice, we are kindly requesting your support to deny all accommodation requests for passengers who wish to take advantage of the Stopover Accommodation package offered by Turkish Airlines.

14 March 2020 - 15:51 - Update on travel restrictions into New Zealand and Air New Zealand Flexibility Policy

Please be advised that from 23:59 Sunday 15 March 2020, customers travelling to New Zealand from all parts of the world (except parts of the Pacific) are required to register with Healthline and self-isolate for 14 days when arriving in New Zealand in line with the Ministry of Health guidance for self-isolation. More information can be found here.

Air New Zealand is reviewing the impact of the new measures announced by the gouvernment on its operations and will adjust its capacity accordingly. We expect to provide an update on network changes over the next few days.

14 March 2020 - 15:46 - Travel Restrictions on UK passport holders

A number of countries have issued new travel restrictions which apply to UK passport holders. This means that some countries will not permit entry to UK nationals and have suspended all previously approved visas, whilst others are imposing mandatory self-isolation periods.

For full details please visit www.gov.uk/foreign-travel-advice

All other passport holders (non-UK) should contact their relevant government agency or embassy for the latest travel updates.

14 March 2020 - 15:29 - Removal of India visas for the UK

"In supersession of all earlier advisories issued on this subject the following visa restrictions are issued for implementation:

i. All existing visas issued to national for any country except those issued to Diplomats, Officials, UN/International organizations, Employment, Project visa stand suspended till April 15, 2020.  This will come into effect from 12:00GMT on March 13, 2020 at the port of departure of any foreigner for onward journey to India.

ii. Visas for foreigners already in India remain valid.  They may contact the nearest FRRO/FRO through e-FRRO module for extension/conversion of their via or grant of any consular service if they choose to do so.

iii. Visa free travel facility granted to OCI card holders shall be kept in advance till April, 15 2020.  This will come into effect from 12:00 GMT on March 13, 2020 at the port of departure of any foreigner for onward journey to India.

iv. Any foreign national who intends to travel to India for compelling reasons may contact the nearest Indian Mission for fresh via.

v. All incoming travelers, including Indian nationals arriving from any destination and having visited China Italy, Iran, Republic of Korea, France, Spain and Germany on or after February 15, 2020 shall be quarantined for a minimum period of 14 days.  This will come into effect from 12:00 GMT on March 13, 2020 at the port of departure of such travelers.

vi. International traffic through land borders will be restricted to designated Immigration Checkposts with robust medical screening facilities.  These will be notified separately by Ministry of home affairs.

2. In addition to the above via restrictions the following travel advisory is hereby issued in accordance with instructions of Ministry of Health and Family Welfare -

i. Indian nationals presently abroad are advised to avoid non-essential travel.  They are hereby informed that they can be quarantined for a minimum period of 14 days on their arrival in India.

ii. All Indian nationals are strongly advised to avoid all non-essential travel abroad.  On their return they can be subjected to quarantine for a minimum period of 14 days."

Above statement from Ministry of Home Affairs, Government of India.

13 MARCH 2020 - 17:00 - Updated US Travel Restrictions 

Under the latest US Government travel restrictions valid from 14th Mar 2020, for 30 days, only US citizens or those holding green cards are permitted to transit in Iceland on the way to the US. All other passengers including UK & Ireland residents are not permitted to travel from UK/Ireland to USA even if they are just transiting in Iceland under the new US travel restrictions. Passengers are able to move their travel dates up to the 31st Dec 2020 with no change fee but must pay any fare increase or can chose to cancel and receive a credit note for future travel on Icelandair.

13 MARCH 2020 - 11:25 - Oman Travel Advisory on COVID-19 Coronavirus Outbreak

From Sunday, 15th March 2020 Oman for a period of 30 days, will be enacting the following:
1. To stop tourist visas for all countries.
2. To suspend all types of sports activities.
3. To stop all nonclass student activities while at the same time taking into consideration procedures that might be undertaken later in accordance with updated pandemic data.
4. To stop the entry of cruise liners to ports of the Sultanate.

For further information, click here.

12 MARCH 2020 - 16.50 - TEMPORARY CLOSURE FRIDAY 13 MARCH 

We will be unavailable between 09:00 – 10:30 whilst a staff briefing takes place in light of the COVID-19 situation

Due to the changing landscape regarding COVID-19, we are holding an internal briefing to ensure staff are fully prepared to service our customers as efficiently as possible during this challenging time. Thank you for bearing with us between 09:00 – 10:30 on Friday 13 March to allow this to take place, please do contact us via email during this time and we will endeavour to respond as soon as possible.

12 MARCH 2020 - 17:15 - Restrictions on domestic travel with the Philippines

President Rodrigo Duterte today announced restrictions on domestic travel by land, sea and air within the Philippines, from March 15 2020 until April 14 2020. Subject to daily review. International flights from the UK remain unaffected and will continue to operate as scheduled.

More details to follow in 24 hours.

12 MARCH 2020 - 12:00 - Lufthansa Group announces flight cancellations for April 2020

“Due to the exceptional circumstances caused by the spread of the coronavirus, Austrian Airlines, Lufthansa, SWISS and Brussels Airlines have published a reduced flight schedule for the period from 29 March to 24 April 2020. The flight cancellations will be implemented successively and will appear in your queue. The capacity adjustments mainly affect Europe, Asia and the Middle East. Further cancellations are expected in the coming weeks.

Customers affected by flight cancellations will be re-booked automatically as far as possible. We would appreciate it if you made necessary changes to the automated re-bookings yourself according to the Flight irregularities policy (OS/LH/LX) and SN INVOL rules.

If your customers are unable to travel due to changed entry restrictions, the airlines of the Lufthansa Group offer free of charge rebooking and refund options. Please contact your Lufthansa Group Agency Support in this regard.

Due to the high volume of calls and the sometimes very long waiting times, we kindly ask you to contact your Lufthansa Group Agency Support currently only in urgent cases.

Continuously updated information on any further capacity adjustments and the goodwill rules already published for re-bookings/re-issues of flights which have not been cancelled can be found at irreg.lufthansaexperts.com

We regret the necessary adjustments to the flight schedule and the inconvenience caused – and thank you for your commitment and cooperation in these challenging times. Please be assured that the teams of the Lufthansa Group airlines will do everything possible to provide you and your customers with the best possible support. At the same time, we ask for your understanding for the long waiting times in this extraordinary situation.” - Your eXperts Team

12 MARCH 2020 - 11:45 - Qatar Airways Travel Advisory for Transiting Passengers and STPC

“We would like to clarify that the temporary suspension of the entry restrictions imposed by the State of Qatar for passengers travelling from the countries listed below are only applicable to DOHA -bound passengers (where DOHA is the final destination).

This does not include and does not affect ALL transiting passengers to and from DOHA, i.e. it only affects passengers where DOHA is the final destination.

BANGLADESH
CHINA
EGYPT
INDIA
IRAN
IRAQ
LEBANON
NEPAL
PAKISTAN
PHILIPPINES
SOUTH KOREA
SRI LANKA
SYRIA
THAILAND

In addition, we would like to inform you that STPC (stopover for purpose of connection) is currently suspended until further notice.

Any transiting passengers with a transit of over 8 hours but less than 24 hours can only stay in Hamad International Airport (HIA) but are not allowed entry to the State of Qatar.” - Qatar Airways - UK Leisure

For further question and enquiries, please contact Qatar Airways’ Trade Support on 03300240126 or 125.

12 MARCH 2020 - 11:35 - A presidential proclamation, published shortly after Mr Trump's speech

A presidential proclamation, published shortly after Mr Trump's speech, specified that the ban applied to anyone who had been in the EU's Schengen border-free area in the 14 days before their arrival in the US.

The 26 Schengen countries are: Austria, Belgium, Czech Republic, Denmark, Estonia, Finland, France, Germany, Greece, Hungary, Iceland, Italy, Latvia, Liechtenstein, Lithuania, Luxembourg, Malta, Netherlands, Norway, Poland, Portugal, Slovakia, Slovenia, Spain, Sweden, and Switzerland

12 MARCH 2020 - 09:45 - Vietnam suspends visa exemptions for UK and seven other EU nations

“Please note that from 00:01 Thursday morning, 12th March 2020, the 15-day single visa waiver on arrival for all travellers from the United Kingdom, Denmark, Norway, Finland, Sweden, Germany, France and Spain is suspended until further notice.   Passengers must obtain a visa in order to travel on Vietnam.”

For further information please visit Foreign Travel Advice https://www.gov.uk/foreign-travel-advice/vietnam/entry-requirements or the Embassy of Vietnam http://vietnamembassy.org.uk/

12 MARCH 2020 – 09:45 – Medical declaration form for travellers entering Vietnam

Please follow this link for a copy of the mandatory medical declaration form http://tokhaiyte.vn the form can also be accessed here: http://suckhoetoandan.vn/khaiyte. Please note that the Medical Declaration Form must be filled either online or as a hard copy to be handed in on arrival in Vietnam.

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