CORONAVIRUS/Taiwan carriers postpone ‘flights to nowhere’ over COVID concerns

Taipei,  Taiwan’s two major airlines on Wednesday postponed or cancelled their air tour packages, including a Boeing 747-400 farewell flight by China Airlines, after the 10th COVID-19 case in a domestic cluster was reported.

Following health authorities’ advice to adhere to COVID-19 prevention regulations, China Airlines (CAL) announced the postponement of its “Farewell Party for the Queen of the Sky” and other tour packages, until further notice.

The farewell tour on Feb. 6 was supposed to be the final commercial flight of CAL’s B-18215 Boeing 747-400 jet, a model that has been discontinued by Boeing.

CAL has also cancelled two similar packages scheduled for Feb. 13, one taking passengers from Taiwan Taoyuan International Airport on a tour over Japan then landing at Kaohsiung International Airport, and the other from Kaohsiung to Taoyuan.

Passengers who had booked the tours can check with CAL or their travel agencies for a refund, the airline said.

EVA Airways, meanwhile, said a Feb. 23 tour package, which was scheduled to go on sale Saturday, has been postponed until late March, in a bid to prevent the spread of the coronavirus.

With border restrictions in other countries and 14-day quarantine requirements in place since the outbreak of the COVID-19 pandemic, overseas travel has been almost impossible.

Taking advantage of people’s longing to simply get on a plane, Taiwan airlines have offering tours that fly over the island and close to neighboring countries before returning home.

Since Jan. 12, Taiwan has reported 10 domestic cases in a cluster infection at Taoyuan General Hospital.


Source: Focus Taiwan News Channel

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