Have you had to change/cancel travel due to COVID-19 (involuntarily or voluntarily)?

robtemt

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I thought I would start a thread as a resource for AFFers who have changed or cancelled travel plans directly or indirectly due to 2019 n-CoV.
  • Did the airline/cruise company cancelling or change your flight/cruise? Or, did you proactively or reactively cancel or change it on your own (and why?).
  • Did they notify you directly, or did you discover it on your own?
  • What was your original plan, and what was the revised plan?
  • What was your experience like?
  • Did you go through any travel insurance claim process, and how was that part of it?

For the record, part of my role at work is to monitor medical related issues, filter out mis/disinformation, and brief other staff using only verified facts from trusted sources, so I am not one to buy into sensationalism or hysteria. BUT, I am also an advocate of forward planning and monitoring situations that could affect travel plans.
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To start it off…. We have begun voluntarily changing (or making back up plans for) our upcoming holiday SYD-(+/- SIN)-LAX-SJO-LAX-HNL-LNY-HNL-SYD

We are booked to the USA via SIN on SQ in a few weeks (F Saver Reward Booking). A few things caused us to start making contingency plans on getting to the USA including:
  • Reading posts from Buttermilk Chicken regarding her RTW flight being disrupted between HKK and CEB
  • Member Pushka raising a good point if Singapore will be next.
  • Monitoring the World Health Organisations surveillance on n-CoV (as part of my responsibilities at work). Singapore confirmed infections were 28 on 5 Feb, 40 on 8 Feb, and 43 on 9 Feb. Several of these cases were human-to-human contact, with no recent travel to China.
  • Bloomberg’s article this morning HERE, which discussed the spread of the virus from a conference attendee in Singapore, via a resort in France, to people in France, Spain, and the UK.

We contacted SQ, to discuss the options of alternative carriers, to which there were no available flights. The agent was very friendly, and said she understood the desire to rebook and avoid an Asia transit, but she said until official bans are in place, there were no options, but “we will offer options if Singapore becomes affected by travel bans”.

We began searching other options. We contacted VFF, who found one seat on DL SYD-LAX in W, and one seat on VA in J SYD-BNE-LAX. No other business or premium reward seats (except any seat) were available +/- 1 day of our desired travel (with pre-booked hotels, cars, and other flights to South America, and Hawaii). We will keep looking for another J seat on same day, and hopefully two on the same flight to free up closer to the date.

We have left our SQ bookings as is for now, and will cancel either that booking of the DL/VA booking closer to the date as thing develop.

Overall Experience:
  • Wait times on the phone are obviously a bit longer, but I’ve not been on hold longer than 15 minutes with either VA or SQ.
  • Staff at both SQ and VA call centres have been friendly, empathetic, and helpful in searching, but have no/limited availability and flexibility in voluntary changes so far.
 

Pushka

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All our travel this year, two international trips now pretty much cancelled. Bali first at end of March and July for a Greek Yacht Cruise and then a Med cruise. Maybe we will get a good deal for FNQ in July. The cruiseline operating the small Greek Island Cruise said they hadn't had any cancellations. Sure you don't! Although Greece hasn't really been impacted as much. Maybe it's warmer there so far. Asked me to change to next year. No dice. They will refund me and their price was in € so I might actually get back more than I paid because of the AUD fall since I Paid. Lost $900 on flights on Qatar non refundable. Bali - likely will lose $1200 because of Qantas cancellation. Celebrity cruises - likely loss of $800 deposit. Just one non refundable hotel night at Rome airport. Not even booking.com can get through to them. Suspect they've closed. It's a Hilton.
 

Denali

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Friends currently in the QF F lounge, one is heading off to Antarctica and another Cocos islands

I havent done anything about our May Sth Africa trip - just going to give it a month because theres no point sitting on the phone for hours/days right now. I was on hold with Coles this morning for 3+hrs and that was enough to do my head in
 
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OATEK

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Assuming you booked directly on www.BA.com; then if you plug your details into this Finnair page (since they also use Amadeus), you should receive an email eticket from them with a lot more detail:


In that email should be the fare basis code for each segment (it may be the same for all) - if you publish the fare basis codes here, someone might be able to look it up using E/F or similar.
Thanks Serfty, I was able to pick up the fare basis codes from Finnair. We had outbound in PE (ELNC00U2), and return in J (INNC00U2). The Penalties for cancellation are as follows, so looks like refund is possible with $250 charge (the higher charge):
PE (fare code E):
BA_ELNC00U2_PE.JPG

The return flight was in I:
BA_INNC0U2_Bus.JPG
 
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FlyboyAl

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2 weeks of self isolation for EVERYONE flying into Australia!
As a small business owner, I can't afford staff for an extra 2 weeks after I come home from a week away, so I guess I now blow my refund when I cancel my trip.
As my trip was booked in January before all this polava, I'll try my travel insurance without holding out much hope.
Not happy Jan!
 

33kft

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As someone who will be impacted by this I respect the ruling, was going to do it anyway (but this will make it easier given it's an official edict) and in general I feel better about the situation as I am overseas now and have been busy trying to re-arrange expedited return travel and couldn't return immediately (and was not convinced doing so would help as I wasn't looking to avoid isolation/testing). I feel this will satisfy a lot of people upset with the handing so far, at least moreso than now. Relieved might be the best description of how I feel.

Edit: I understand this is not the case for others - obviously some people's situations are much different and I empathise totally, this is definitely not an option which considers the economic and social effects, it's just an on the spot personal assessment.
 

Pushka

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2 weeks of self isolation for EVERYONE flying into Australia!
As a small business owner, I can't afford staff for an extra 2 weeks after I come home from a week away, so I guess I now blow my refund when I cancel my trip.
As my trip was booked in January before all this polava, I'll try my travel insurance without holding out much hope.
Not happy Jan!
Same here. But I'm wondering if Travel Insurance will now cover it?
 

deka2

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I live in Sydney have a 3 day work trip to Melbourne tomorrow.
Won't be going into the city, staying in the suburbs and eating at the hotel.

My son lives in New York , working from home, and he is very concerned that I am going.
 

Pushka

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I live in Sydney have a 3 day work trip to Melbourne tomorrow.
Won't be going into the city, staying in the suburbs and eating at the hotel.

My son lives in New York , working from home, and he is very concerned that I am going.
Remind him what a mirror is.
 

FlyboyAl

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So, if one has to do 2 weeks of "self isolation", how will it work.
If I live in Adelaide, and fly into Melbourne coming home, do I "self isolate" in my city of entry, or do I go home to Adelaide, and then do it.
And who checks that I'm doing it???
Yes, I know I'm doing this for the good of my country.
 

serfty

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So, if one has to do 2 weeks of "self isolation", how will it work.
If I live in Adelaide, and fly into Melbourne coming home, do I "self isolate" in my city of entry, or do I go home to Adelaide, and then do it.
And who checks that I'm doing it???
Yes, I know I'm doing this for the good of my country.
You 'carefully' go home to Adelaide. See here
... and travelling:

 
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deka2

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Thanks for the explanation Pushka.
My son would agree with you.
He told us he would rather be out in the country than in NY.

His argument is that he is young and fit, and we are old and vulnerable.
In the end it is good to see he is worried about us.
 

PineappleSkip

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Help! Does anyone have a link to more info about this 'immediate' self isolation. Transiting in BKK, flight to SYD boards in 3 hr, connecting to BNE, overnight in BNE city then pick up Mrs Pineapple off SIN flight on Tue am. That was the plan.

There is nothing on Health dept website, nothing on Home Affairs, well it is Sunday :rolleyes: , and I have no idea what I'm now supposed to do. Other than its an offence to breach these unknown rules and they will be enforced.

This is pathetic!
 

I love to travel

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Help! Does anyone have a link to more info about this 'immediate' self isolation. Transiting in BKK, flight to SYD boards in 3 hr, connecting to BNE, overnight in BNE city then pick up Mrs Pineapple off SIN flight on Tue am. That was the plan.

There is nothing on Health dept website, nothing on Home Affairs, well it is Sunday :rolleyes: , and I have no idea what I'm now supposed to do. Other than its an offence to breach these unknown rules and they will be enforced.

This is pathetic!
Sorry not sure but sertfy has posted links.
 
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Singapore Airlines are saying I have to accept very substantial changes to my flying schedule before I can cancel redemption flights Per-Sin-Bkk. I imagine if I accept the changes and then cancel I am going to have to pay cancellation fees. Does anyone know if this is normal practice?
I would have thought if they are changing the original bookings then I have the right to cancel without any monetary penalties.
 
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