PIA has temporarily suspended its international flight operations for a week, starting from 22nd March to 5th April in a bid to control the spread of coronavirus in Pakistan.
The suspension of flight operations will begin from 8 pm on Saturday 21st March 2020. The decision came after many cases were reported in Pakistan from people coming from abroad. The spokesperson of PIA informed that all the ticket will be refunded. But there will be no charges if people want to extend their booking after 28th March.
Gov of Pakistan has decided to suspend all commercial,private & chartered flight operations effective from today for 2 x weeks. This step is for the safety of our people -that is our top priority. pic.twitter.com/I4VEpHUDwL
— Sayed Z Bukhari (@sayedzbukhari) March 21, 2020
The national carrier is currently texting the passengers and informing them about the cancellation of flights.
Abdul Hafeez Khan said that the decision was taken after Civil Aviation Authority had made it mandatory for travelers from abroad to carry coronavirus test certificates that caused confusion and perturbation among passengers.
Hence, international flights will remain suspended until a coherent policy is formed in this regard. He anticipated the things to get better in a week. He assured that people can re-book their seats once flight operations normalize after a week.
Earlier, Pakistan International Airline (PIA) has decided to temporarily suspend flight operations to Italy to keep a check on coronavirus.
Earlier, PIA spokesman Abdullah Hafeez said in a press release that the national carrier had temporarily suspended its flight operation to and from Milan till March 31.
However, the spokesman said the passengers having the nationality of any European countries could travel to Paris by PIA flights.
PIA had already suspended flight operations for Iran and Qatar in the wake of coronavirus spread.
Just a few days ago, the spokesman of Pakistan International Airlines, confirmed that the national carrier offloaded the passengers traveling to Canada on visit visas. He added that as per new restrictions, only Canadian, US nationals or diplomatic staff are allowed to travel to Toronto.
The spokesman informed that Oman, UAE, and Malaysia have imposed a similar restriction for people traveling to these countries on business and visit visas.
“From March 18, PIA will not take any passenger visiting Canada on visit visa,” the PIA spokesman informed.
He further informed that a similar ban has been promulgated by UAE, Oman, and Malaysia on the entry of non-residents. In the latest notification issued by The Supreme Council of National Security, UAE authorities have strictly warned the airlines to adhere to the decision.