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Wednesday, May 25, 2022

Virgin Atlantic won’t fly to Hong Kong until at least September

Virgin Atlantic won’t fly to Hong Kong until at least September

Virgin Atlantic Airways Ltd. won’t resume flights to Hong Kong until at least September, despite the Asian financial hub easing up on Covid-19 related rules for airlines and travelers.
Although a ban on inbound flights from nine countries, including the U.K. and the U.S., was lifted on April 1 after almost three months, major foreign carriers have not rushed to return. U.K.-based Virgin Atlantic is one of the first carriers from those regions to explicitly state its position.

“To ensure operational readiness for our London Heathrow–Hong Kong passenger services, we have taken the careful decision to extend the pause in operations, with the intention to resume services from September 2022,” Virgin said in an emailed statement.

British Airways Plc has responded to customers on Twitter to say its flights to Hong Kong won’t return until at least May 28. United Airlines Holdings Inc. is only selling tickets for non-stop services between San Francisco and Hong Kong from the start of July.

Further out, Qantas Airways Ltd. is selling tickets for Sydney-Hong Kong starting Oct. 30, according to a check of its online ticket sales availability.

Virgin suspended flights to and from Hong Kong in late December. The carrier has also paused its cargo-only flights.

Foreign carriers are also navigating route-ban rules that could see inbound flights suspended for a week if they carry three or more Covid-infected passengers to Hong Kong. Emirates has served six such bans this year -- its Dubai-Bangkok-Hong Kong service has been suspended for a total of 77 days on and off.
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