American Airlines Extends Hong Kong Flight Suspension

American Airlines has extended its suspension of flights to Hong Kong. The suspension is due to a fall in demand. Recently, flights to Hong Kong have seen a drop in demand due to ongoing protests, tied with the current coronavirus outbreak.

American Airlines Extends Hong Kong Flight Suspension
American Airlines has halted Hong Kong flights until at least the 21st of February. Photo: Getty Images

Earlier today Virgin Australia announced that it was pulling out of flights to Hong Kong altogether. Now, American Airlines has joined by saying that it will extend its suspension of flights to the Chinese Special Administrative Region. The suspension comes following a sharp drop in demand for tickets to Hong Kong across the board.

What’s the latest?

American Airlines has announced that it is increasing its suspension on flights to Hong Kong. The airline today announced that it would not fly to the city until February 21st at the earliest. This is when it intends to resume services from Dallas Fort Worth.

Coronavirus, United States, Arrival Airports
The United States has restricted passengers arriving from China to just 7 airports. Photo: Getty Images

Additionally, American Airlines does not expect to fly to Hong Kong from Los Angeles until The 27th of March. However, it is possible that these dates may move both forwards and backwards. American Airlines will continue to assess the situation in Hong Kong tied with demand to determine these dates.

Demand is falling

Across-the-board, the demand for flights to Hong Kong has been falling. This, however, is nothing new. For the past year or so, anti-government protests have been taking place in Hong Kong. This has already had a devastating impact on passenger traffic to the region. In fact, A month ago, United Airlines said that the issues in Hong Kong cost US$90 million.

However, the ongoing coronavirus epidemic has made things worse in terms of passenger numbers. This is despite World Health Organisation figures, which state that only 21 people in Hong Kong have been diagnosed with coronavirus so far. This figure is dwarfed by the almost 20,000 people diagnosed with the virus in Hubei Province where it originated.

American Airlines 787
American has suspended the routes due to low demand. Photo: Getty

Not the only airline suspending Hong Kong

American Airlines isn’t the only airline that has suspended Hong Kong services. Earlier today Virgin Australia announced that it had pulled out of the city completely. United Airlines, who has been suffering losses due to the route, also suspended flights to the city until at least February 20th.

However, Hong Kong-based carrier Cathay Pacific has been hit harder than most. While most airlines have a handful of Hong Kong routes, Cathay Pacific relies on Hong Kong routes. For the time being, the airline has been cutting down on some of its routes such as its fifth freedom flight from Vancouver. Additionally, the airline has been asking staff to take three weeks of unpaid leave.

What do you think about the situation in Hong Kong? Let us know your thoughts in the comments!