U.S. airlines to halt mainland China service

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China-US relations
Photo Credit: Pavlo Lys/Shutterstock.com

American Airlines has suspended all flights to mainland China, effective immediately, while Delta and United will suspend all mainland China flights beginning Feb. 6. 

American said its Hong Kong schedule remains unchanged. United will continue operating one flight daily between San Francisco and Hong Kong. Delta doesn't fly to Hong Kong.

In a brief statement Friday, American said its decision for the immediate suspension was based on the late Thursday announcement by the State Department to raise the advisory level on travel to China to Level 4 (do not travel) due to the coronavirus outbreak. 

American’s decision also followed a lawsuit filed earlier Thursday by the carrier’s pilots, which sought an immediate halt to China flights. 

Delta said it would continue operating outbound flights to mainland China until Feb. 3 and return flights from China through Feb. 5. United will operate its last outbound China flight on Feb. 4 and its final inbound flight on Feb. 5. The carriers said they are continuing flights until those dates in order to make sure customers and crew have the option to return home. 

Delta plans to resume China service April 30 while American and United have set a resumption date of March 28. 

All three airlines had previously announced substantial cutbacks to their China schedules beginning in early February. 

The carriers are offering refunds for the canceled flights. Travelers ticketed on a Delta or United flight to China in the coming week can obtain a change-fee waiver, but not a refund.

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