Air NZ continues flying to China while other major airlines suspend flights

Air New Zealand is continuing its flights between Auckland and Shanghai despite many of the world's largest airlines suspending all services to China.

However, Air NZ is offering the option of amending bookings for anyone booked to travel to China on the airline before 29 February.

As well as Air NZ, numerous other airlines fly direct to China from New Zealand such as Air China, China Southern, China Eastern, Hainan Airlines and Sichuan Airlines, all of which are yet to make changes to their schedules.

Major airlines that have suspended services to China:

  • Lufthansa
  • American Airlines
  • British Airways
  • United
  • Air Canada
  • Cathay Pacific Airways
  • Air India

So far no direct flights have been affected, however many Kiwis book flights to China on a service that includes a stop-off elsewhere in Asia, such as in Singapore or Hong Kong.

Passengers who have booked non-direct flights to China on airlines such as Cathay Pacific, Singapore Airlines, Malaysia Airlines or Qantas should check their flight details regularly, as the second leg of your journey may end up being affected.

Cathay Pacific, which is based in Hong Kong, said it would be progressively reducing capacity to and from mainland China at least 50 percent from Thursday.

Flights to China on Qantas are currently operating as normal, but passengers who wish to delay or cancel their travel plans are being offered the option to change or cancel their bookings.

According to travel data website, hundreds of flights to China have been cancelled in the last 12 hours. China Eastern cancelled 537 flights,  Shenzhen Airlines 127, and Air China 98 flights.

Allianz Partners NZ says at this stage their travel insurance policies will not cover customers wanting to cancel travel to anywhere apart from mainland China.

If you are travelling anywhere else other than mainland China, even on a stopover, and you want to change your plans due to coronavirus, your costs will not be covered by your travel insurance.