PAL, CEB temporarily cancel Hong Kong flights after PH gets ‘high risk’ tag

Published April 19, 2021, 5:00 PM

by Ariel Fernandez

Flag-carrier Philippine Airlines (PAL), and budget airline Cebu Pacific (CEB) will temporarily cancel their Manila-Hong Kong-Manila flights.

This, after the Hong Kong government tagged Pakistan, India, and the Philippines as “extremely high risk countries” following the confirmation of a second local coronavirus disease (COVID-19) case in the Chinese territory involving a mutated strain of the virus.

Specifically, Hong Kong authorities have banned for two weeks the entry of people coming from the three counties.

PAL Spokesperson Cielo Villaluna said that flights between Manila and Hong Kong will be cancelled for the next two weeks effective Tuesday, April 20, 2021 in line with the Hong Kong government’s directive.

But she later noted exceptions for the dates of April 20, 23, and 27, when the schedule flights from Hong Kong bound for Manila would push through.

PAL said flights PR300/301 Manila-Hong Kong-Manila scheduled on April 21, 22, 24 to 26, and 28 to 30 have already been cancelled.

Affected passengers may refund their tickets, convert them to a travel voucher, or opt for unlimited rebooking with no rebooking fee until Dec. 31, 2021, the airline said.

CEB said that they will also comply by canceling their Manila-Hong Kong -Manila flights, the Manila Bulletin learned.

Meanwhile, another budget airline, AirAsia, clarified that it hasn’t resumed international flights except for repatriation purposes and chartered fights.

AirAsia Spokesperson Steve Dailisan said the company is working on the inoculation of its frontline workers, which is set to begin next month.

“Our target is to vaccinate our pilots, cabin crew, ground staff, and those with direct engagements among our guests,” Dailisan said.