AirAsia on Sunday announced the cancellation of all flights between the Philippines and China in compliance with President Rodrigo Duterte's order of a temporary travel ban on tourists from the country and its special administrative regions amid the threat of the 2019 novel coronavirus acute respiratory disease (2019-nCoV ARD).
In an advisory, AirAsia said it will be cancelling all flights between Manila, Kalibo and Cebu and mainland China cities (Guangzhou, Shenzhen, Shanghai), Hong Kong SAR and Macao SAR starting Sunday, February 2, until further notice from the government.
AirAsia said all affected guests will be notified immediately via email or SMS.
The budget carrier also advised guests to update their contact details using the "My Bookings" feature on airasia.com to receive timely notifications.
AirAsia added it will be implementing a mandatory temperature screening of all its passengers prior to boarding any domestic and international Z2 flight.
Details of provisions for affected passengers are as follows:
- Move flight (new flight travel date on the same route within 30 days from the original flight time)
- Credit account (retain the value of your fare in your AirAsia BIG Loyalty account for future use)
- Full refund
"AirAsia assures that the safety and wellbeing of our guests and Allstars is our top priority. AirAsia is complying with advice and regulations from the local government, civil aviation authorities, global and local health agencies, including the World Health Organization," it said.
"AirAsia is closely monitoring this situation and reserves the right to announce further policies according to the latest developments," it added.
Earlier, Health Secretary Francisco Duque III confirmed the second 2019-nCoV case and first death in the country—the first death outside China.
In a press conference, Duque said the 44-year-old Chinese male companion of the first confirmed case of the virus in the country, a 38-year-old Chinese woman, also tested positive for the epidemic and died on Saturday.
Both Chinese nationals came from Wuhan, China and were confined at San Lazaro Hospital.
Meanwhile, 24 patients under investigation tested negative for the virus, while four others are awaiting results from the Research Institute for Tropical Medicine.
The death toll of the 2019-nCoV has already reached 305: one in the Philippines and 304 in China. — Ma. Angelica Garcia/BM, GMA News