You are here: Home - Household Bills - News -

Airlines suspend flights to coronavirus-hit China: your travel rights

0
Written by: Paloma Kubiak
29/01/2020
Airlines have suspended flights between the UK and China after the British government advised against all but essential travel to the mainland as the deadly coronavirus outbreak continues.

The Foreign & Commonwealth Office (FCO) has advised against all but essential travel to mainland China but the warning excludes Hong Kong and Macau.

In response, British Airways has temporarily suspended flights to and from Beijing and Shanghai until Friday 31 January while it “assesses the situation”. Flights to and from Hong Kong remain unaffected.

Holidaymakers due to depart between now and 23 February 2020 can re-book flights operated by British Airways for other dates to the same destination. BA said this must be in the same cabin class as the original flight or a lower cabin if available. It also includes any connecting flights that are operated by BA.

Customers can also request a refund for flights by contacting BA or if booked via a travel agent, contacting the agent for a refund.

Virgin Atlantic, which operates flights to Hong Kong, and Shanghai in mainland China, said flights to these destinations continue.

However it has a policy in place which means customers have three options if they no longer wish to travel to the destinations:

  1. Re-book to a later date. Tickets must be rebooked on or before 29 February and travel must start no later than 31 March, subject to availability of seats in the same cabin. These changes will be free of charge.
  2. Change your travel destination. Tickets must be rebooked on or before 29 February and travel must start no later than 31 March, subject to availability of seats in the same cabin. Here you will have to pay a difference in the ticket fare.
  3. Request a refund. If you decide you no longer want to travel and you don’t want to change your ticket to another flight, you can apply for a refund on Virgin Atlantic’s website. Cancellations must be made on or before 29 February.

Cathay Pacific said it will reduce the capacity of its flights to and from mainland China by 50% or more, from 30 January to the end of March. It advises flyers to check ‘manage booking’ for more information.

It added that rebooking, rerouting and refund charges will be waived for all tickets issued worldwide (irrespective of fare type) on or before 28 January for travel on Cathay Pacific/Cathay Dragon confirmed bookings arriving to or departing from mainland China between 28 January and 31 March. Cathay Dragon flights to and from Wuhan have also been suspended until 31 March 2020.

Adam French, Which? consumer rights expert, said: “With the FCO warning against all but essential travel, those with trips planned to China will rightly be concerned about what to do next.

“In these circumstances, your tour operator should get in touch to cancel your trip and offer you a refund. You are also likely to be covered for cancellation by your travel insurance.”

There are 0 Comment(s)

If you wish to comment without signing in, click your cursor in the top box and tick the 'Sign in as a guest' box at the bottom.

The savings accounts paying the most interest

If one of your jobs this month is to get your finances in order, moving your savings to a higher paying deal i...

Coronavirus and your finances: what help can you get?

News and updates on everything to do with coronavirus and your personal finances.

Everything you need to know about being furloughed

If you’ve been ‘furloughed’ by your company, here’s what it means…

What will happen if rates change

How your finances will be impacted by a rise in interest rates.

Regular Savings Calculator

Small regular contributions can build up nicely over time.

Online Savings Calculator

Work out how your online savings can build over time.

Having a baby and your finances: seven top tips

We’re guessing the Duchess of Cambridge won’t be fretting about maternity pay or whether she’ll still be...

Protecting family wealth: 10 tips for cutting inheritance tax

Inheritance tax - sometimes known as 'death tax' - can cause even more heartache for bereaved families. But th...

Travel insurance: Five tips to ensure a successful claim

Ahead of your summer holiday, it’s important to make sure you have the right level of travel cover or you co...

Money Tips of the Week

Read previous post:
M&G property fund to remain shut

M&G has confirmed the suspension of its Property Portfolio will continue for the foreseeable future as the managers continue to...

Close