The Government advises against any non-essential travel. They wrote: “As countries respond to the COVID-19 pandemic, including travel and border restrictions, the FCO advises British nationals against all but essential international travel. Any country or area may restrict travel without notice. If you live in the UK and are currently travelling abroad, you are strongly advised to return now, where and while there are still commercial routes available. Many airlines are suspending flights and many airports are closing, preventing flights from leaving.
When will airlines start flying again?
British Airways has suspended all flights from London Gatwick and London City airports, and has moved all their operations to Heathrow’s Terminal 5.
The airline is, however, one of the few still offering repatriation flights for Brits stranded abroad as part of the £75million deal agreed by the Government.
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Most airlines have suspended their services in light of the ongoing pandemic
Most British Airways flights have been grounded
The latest travel advice from British Airways reads: “We recognise the uncertainty that coronavirus may be causing.
“This situation will remain under review and we will continue to provide coronavirus travel and service updates.
“We will do everything we can to help customers affected. We continue to liaise closely with global health authorities and Government agencies on behalf of our customers.”
They also state that there are a range of available opting to amend existing bookings in terms of destination, date of travel or both – at no extra cost – in response to the fact they cannot say when a normal flight service will resume.
The latest travel advice from the Government discourages non-essential travel
RyanAir have not yet specified when they will start running flights again
The Ryanair website states: “We are working with EU Government to try to keep some minimum flight links open for emergency reasons, even though the passenger loads on these flights is very low.
“All the aircraft are disinfected daily. With low loads and cashless flights, social distancing is being optimised onboard and we ask all passengers to cooperate fully with our crews who are doing their best in difficult times to maintain vital links to/from Ireland and to/from the UK to facilitate our passengers and their families to deal with emergencies that may require urgent travel over the coming days and weeks.
“At this time, we do not know how long this lockdown will last.”
EasyJet has been grounded all its flights for the foreseeable future
EasyJet has grounded all its flights for the foreseeable future.
The airline has not yet confirmed when they will be flying again, but staff have been given a temporary 2-month leave of absence – suggesting the situation will be re-assessed in June.
EasyJet wrote: “Since COVID-19 started spreading across Europe, the travel restrictions by governments have severely impacted our operations and forced a significant number of flight cancellations.
“It has become increasingly difficult to operate flights whilst guaranteeing the wellbeing of our customers and crew. Therefore, we have taken the difficult decision to ground all easyJet aircraft until fighter notice.
“If your flight has been cancelled as a result of this, we are sorry. You will be contacted by our customer service team outlining the options available to you.”
In response to the global crisis, TUI has suspended all package holidays and cruises.
The travel firm has since said that all trips leading up to June 11 have been cancelled, while Marella Cruise holidays will not resume until June 30 at the earliest.
The dates are subject to review depending on Government advice in the upcoming weeks.
TUI wrote: “If your holiday can no longer go ahead as planned, you will receive a refund credit for the full value of your value of your holiday, and we’ll give you a separate booking incentive up to 20 percent.
“We understand that you may not be ready to book again just yet, so the refund credit gives you the flexibility to book your travel in future. Plus, if your original booking was for a package holiday, you’ll get a separate booking incentive of up to 20 percent.”
Richard Branson has been slammed for asking for a Government bailout
Virgin Atlantic has suspended all flights and has not confirmed when they will resume.
Billionaire owner Richard Branson has made headlines recently after asking for a Government bailout of his airline.
It follows the collapse of Virgin Australia as they went into administration after being refused a bailout from the Australian government.
Virgin Atlantic writes: “The COVID-19 situation is dynamic and fast-moving, and Virgin Atlantic continues to monitor it very closely, with the health and safety of customers and people remaining the absolute priority.
“All actions taken are guided by the World Health Organisation, Public Health England and the Foreign and Commonwealth Office and by the latest advice provided by these experts.”