Coronavirus travel restrictions: Easyjet and British Airways announce flight cancellations

16 March 2020, 08:24 | Updated: 7 April 2020, 10:43

Major UK airlines are scaling back flights
Major UK airlines are scaling back flights. Picture: Getty

Major UK airlines are scaling back their flights amid Coronavirus travel bans

As of April 6th, 2010, The Foreign Office has changed the travel restrictions and are now advising against all non-essential travel "indefinitely".

A previous ban was set on March 17th, 2020 for an initial period of only 30 days, however, that advice has now been extended with no end date.

The FCO has stated on Twitter “Travel update: The Foreign Office indefinitely advises against all non-essential global travel.”

A video attached to the tweet read: “The situation is changing rapidly. Travellers could face severe disruption and be unable to return to the UK.“

EasyJet today announced 'further significant cancellations' of flights as concern about Coronavirus mount.

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The airline's decision comes after a number of countries - including the US, Italy and Spain - have become affected by travel restrictions and bans.

Flights are increasingly being cancelled as airlines scale back
Flights are increasingly being cancelled as airlines scale back. Picture: Getty

EasyJet said in a statement: “Due to the unprecedented level of travel restrictions being imposed by governments in response to the coronavirus pandemic and significantly reduced levels of customer demand, easyJet has undertaken further significant cancellations.

“These actions will continue on a rolling basis for the foreseeable future and could result in the grounding of the majority of the easyJet fleet.

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“EasyJet will continue to operate rescue flights for short periods where we can, in order to repatriate customers.”

British Airways have also announced plans to scale back flights.

British Airways will stop 'at least 75 per cent' of their services in the coming weeks
British Airways will stop 'at least 75 per cent' of their services in the coming weeks. Picture: Getty

Their parent companies IAG said in a statement: “IAG is implementing further initiatives in response to this challenging market environment.

“Capacity, in terms of available seat kilometres, in the first quarter of 2020 is now expected to be reduced by around 7.5 per cent compared to last year.

“For April and May, the group plans to reduce capacity by at least 75% compared to the same period in 2019.

“IAG is also taking actions to reduce operating expenses and improve cash flow. These include grounding surplus aircraft, reducing and deferring capital spending, cutting non-essential and non-cyber related IT spend, freezing recruitment and discretionary spending, implementing voluntary leave options, temporarily suspending employment contracts and reducing working hours.”


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