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Travel Advisory: Wuhan China

January 29, 20205 minute read
Medical Tourism,Wuhan China

Many airlines have been suspended flights to Wuhan China as a result of the current coronavirus outbreak in Hubei Province. A number of cities in South East Asia connect by direct flights to Wuhan as they are popular destinations for outbound tourists. Inbound travellers often head for a cruise through the Three Gorges on the Yangtze River, home to the massive Three Gorges Dam. Apart from the airlines offering direct flights into Wuhan, other airlines with China services are offering various options to travellers.

As the situation has now been upgraded by World Health Organisation to Pandemic status on 12th March 2020, many countries are restricting travel. Please check with your airline before you leave and also check that you will receive a visa. Many countries have stopped or restricted entry to to visitors from certain regions or specified countries.  This is a very fluid situation.

You can also check the Immigration/Border Control websites of the countries you are planning to visit for updates. This is the latest visa information from India.

Flights to Wuhan, China

Three airline groups in Malaysia, Thailand and Singapore are suspending flights to the city.

Malindo Air

Malindo Air flies to Wuhan and a number of other destinations in China. They have posted the following travel options. These cover both refunds and rescheduling of flights.

AirAsia Group

AirAsia is updating their Travel Advisory on a regular basis and have currently extended the suspension of all flights to and from Wuhan until 29th February 2020. This covers flights between Wuhan and Kota Kinabalu, Bangkok and Phuket.

The airline is also arranging for passengers with flight bookings to/from all destinations in mainland China to obtain credit account or full refund.

This is necessary because a number of destinations within AirAsia’s flight network have imposed travel bans on travellers based on:

  • nationality
  • cities of origin
  • travel history or
  • purpose of travel.

AirAsia recommends travellers check with respective governments or embassy offices prior to travel. This will also impact on travellers flying with other airlines.

AirAsia offers the following options to passengers affected by the flight changes and travel bans:

  • Credit account: Retain the value of your fare in your AirAsia BIG Loyalty account for future travel with AirAsia.
    • Online credit account can be redeemed for booking within 90 calendar days from the issuance date.
      • New travel dates can be after the expiry date according to available AirAsia flight schedule.
    • Applicable for flights to/from mainland China until 15th February 2020 ticketed prior to 28th January 2020.
      • (29th February 2020 for flights to/from Wuhan only)
  • Full refund: Obtain a full refund to your original payment method for the amount equivalent to your booking.
    • For all flights to/from mainland China until 15th February 2020 ticketed prior to 28th January 2020.

Refund requests for direct online bookings can be made with AVA at AirAsia support. Have all your details ready and the process is quick and easy.

For bookings made through travel agents including online travel agents, all refund requests should be made via the respective travel agents.

Singapore Airlines, Scoot

Singapore Airlines Group is not currently offering any travel advice for travel to Wuhan. However, their low cost subsidiary Scoot offers services to Wuhan China. Scoot has posted this Travel Advisory which also makes reference to travellers with Hubei issued documents. Current flight cancellations are listed here.

The other airlines in the Singapore Airlines Group, SIA and SilkAir, do not fly to Wuhan.

Airlines flying to other destinations in China

Malaysia Airlines

Malaysia Airlines does not fly to Wuhan. However they have issued this travel advisory for their passengers to other destinations in China.

Qantas and Jetstar

Similarly, airlines within the Qantas Group including Qantas and their Jetstar subsidiaries, do not fly directly to Wuhan. Qantas flies from Sydney to Beijing or to Shanghai 5 times week. They also offer codeshare flights with China Eastern to  Shanghai, Wuhan, Kunming, as well as Hangzhou and Nanjing via Beijing. At the time of writing Qantas have not posted any travel advisory.

China Eastern

China Eastern offers services from both Kuala Lumpur and Singapore to Wuhan via Shanghai. Check the Travel Advice from China Eastern here. The link also includes information regarding ticket refunds.

Thai Airways

Thai Airways does not fly to Wuhan. However it does fly to other destinations in China. Thai health authorities have set up infrared thermo-scan units at Suvarnabhumi, Don Mueang, Chiang Mai, Phuket and Krabi International Airports. These units provide round-the-clock screening of all passengers, especially those from China. Thailand’s Department of Disease Control (DDC) is also issuing a ‘Health Beware Card’ for travellers arriving in Thailand.

Other Chinese airlines flying between South East Asia and China China include China Southern and Xiamen Air. If you are planning a trip to China, please check regularly with your airline and also ensure your travel insurance covers these situations.

# AirAsia, COVID-19, Kota Kinabalu, Malindo Air, Scoot, Travel Advisory, Wuhan
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