Osaka’s Kansai Airport is closed until further notice following the most powerful typhoon to hit Japan in 25 years. The typhoon, which killed at least 10 people in Japan, caused extensive flooding and damage to Kansai International Airport (KIX). Following the storm, 3,000 passengers and airport staff were stranded inside the airport terminal after a tanker hit the main bridge linking the airport to the city. These passengers have since been evacuated on boats.
At this stage, the airport’s runways and access bridge are expected to re-open on 6 September at the earliest, although the exact time is not yet known. In the meantime, all flights in and out of Osaka Kansai are cancelled.
Some flights out of Osaka Itami Airport (ITM), which mainly handles domestic flights, were also cancelled due to Typhoon Jebi. But flights at this airport have since resumed.
Qantas flights QF33 and QF34 between Sydney and Osaka were cancelled today. Jetstar flighs JQ15 and JQ16 between Cairns and Osaka also did not run today. Neither flight is scheduled to operated tomorrow, but is not yet clear whether flights over the weekend will also be cancelled.
Cathay Pacific has cancelled all flights to Osaka until 10 September. At this stage, All Nippon Airways has only cancelled flights until tomorrow. But the airline has stopped selling new tickets on all flights to and from Kansai Airport until 11 September.
Due to the Kansai Airport flooding, some airlines have added additional flights to other Japanese airports as replacement services for cancelled Osaka flights. Singapore Airlines is operating extra flights to the nearby city of Nagoya until at least 7 September. Similarly, Japan Airlines is running extra flights from Tokyo Narita to Taipei, Honolulu and Los Angeles.
Many airlines are also offering refunds and free date changes to customers with bookings to or from Osaka Kansai Airport during the next week.
A number of AFF members were in Osaka and the surrounding region during Typhoon Jebi.
Now at Conrad Osaka. Got stuck at the ground floor about 2 to 3 hours ago as the lifts were out of action. The worst has passed apparently. Still some rain not so windy now. Can see some exterior damage to a nearby building.
It was the strongest I’ve been in since the early 90s, and those were further west. Quite fast moving, though, which will limit the rain damage. There is building debris all over the place in Kobe.
Let’s hope Osaka can quickly recover. In the meantime, check with your airline if you have upcoming travel to Osaka.
Join the discussion on the Australian Frequent Flyer forum: Typhoon Jebi