British Airways, American Airlines among airlines to stop flying to China
Airlines around the world have started to cancel more flights to China as coronavirus fears have dragged down demand for air travel in the area.
Air Canada normally runs 33 flights a week to China out of Toronto, Vancouver and Montreal but on Wednesday the airline announced it would halt all flights to Beijing and Shanghai until the end of February at least.
“Air Canada’s last flights departing Canada will operate today and the return flights will operate from Beijing and Shanghai tomorrow, January 30, 2020,” the airline said. “Affected customers will be notified and offered options, including travel on other carriers where available, or a full refund. Air Canada regrets this situation and apologizes for the serious disruption to our customers’ travel plans,” the airline said in a statement.
It isn’t the only airline scaling back.
British Airways on Wednesday suspended all direct flights to and from mainland China through to the end of February, although it will maintain limited service to Hong Kong.
“We apologize to customers for the inconvenience, but the safety of our customers and crew is always our priority,” the airline said in a statement on Wednesday. “Customers due to travel to or from China in the coming days can find more information on BA.com.”
American Airlines said Wednesday it will suspend flights between Los Angeles and both Shanghai and Beijing from Feb. 9 through Mar. 27. The airline cited “the significant decline in demand for travel to and from China.”
Hong Kong-based airline Cathay Pacific said Tuesday it has reduced its overall seat capacity on Chinese routes by half, through to the end of March. Under normal circumstances, Cathay has 240 flights per week that take off or land in China.