Despite not knowing when they will be able to resume flights to Wuhan, China Southern Airlines has in the last 48-72 hours filed a schedule update for flights to start operating again in March.
In a move similar to the way airlines keep reintroducing the grounded Boeing 737 MAX back into service only to have to push it back further, China Southern thinks it will be flying to Wuhan again in just over a month.
After doing some crystal ball gazing, the Guangzhou based airline has penciled in a resumption of service to Wuhan beginning on February 9th, 2020. Flights are only available for reservations after the 1st of March.
Before we get into the newly scheduled flights, let’s take a look and see where we are at the present regarding the coronavirus outbreak in Wuhan.
What is coronavirus?
Similar in a way to SARS, the latest respiratory disease is a member of the coronavirus family that has never been seen before. Like other similar types of viruses, it is believed to have originated in animals before spreading to humans. Symptoms start with a fever, a dry cough and then shortness of breath.
Seeing as coronavirus is a type of viral pneumonia, traditional antibiotics have no effect, which means drugs normally used to combat the flu are worthless.
In severe cases, people infected with coronavirus need to be hospitalized so they can receive help breathing while being given intravenous fluids. The ability to recover from the virus depends upon a person’s immune system and their general health before becoming ill.
So far 3,000 people in China are confirmed as having contracted coronavirus leading to 80 deaths.
Wuhan Airport is closed due to the coronavirus
Following an outbreak of the coronavirus in the central Chinese city of Wuhan, all flights into and out of the virus epicenter have been banned. Several days ago, in an attempt to stop the virus from spreading, the Chinese authorities imposed a quarantine on Wuhan while canceling all forms of mass transport.
On the 23rd of January, when talking about measure being taken to contain the virus, spokesperson for the Chinese Foreign Ministry, Geng Shuang said:
“This morning, Wuhan City’s new coronavirus-infected pneumonia epidemic prevention and control headquarters issued a notice that the city’s urban bus, subway, ferry, and long-distance passenger transport were suspended; for no special reason, citizens should not leave Wuhan, and the airport and train station leaving the Han corridor are temporarily closed.”
Now that we have established that Wuhan is on lockdown let’s have a look at how China Southern intends to resume flights to and from the coronavirus epicenter.
China Southern Wuhan schedule
China Southern’s revised schedule shows its resumption of flights to various destinations at different points throughout March. These include:
- Two daily flights to Bangkok resume on March 1st
- Three daily flights to Dubai resume on March 1st
- One daily flight to Ho Chi Minh City resumes on March 29th
- A three times per week service to Istanbul resumes on March 2nd
- A three times per week service to London Heathrow resumes on March 6th. Initially, there will be only one flight per week before introducing three weekly flights on March 16th, 2020.
- Three weekly flights to Moscow Sheremetyevo will resume on March 29th
- Two weekly flights to Nagoya will resume on the March 30th
- Three weekly flights to New York (JFK) will resume on March 1st
- Two weekly flights to Osaka Kansai will resume on March 1st
- Three weekly flights to Rome will resume on March 31st
- Three weekly flights to San Francisco will resume on March 31st
- Four weekly flights to Seoul will resume on March 1st
All China Southern flights from Guangzhou that used to make a stopover in Wuhan have now been made non-stop flights, until March 28th.
China Southern regional flights
For regional services, China Southern’s refiled Wuhan schedule states:
- Three weekly flights from Wuhan to Kaohsiung will resume on March 1st
- Four weekly flights from Wuhan to Macau will resume on March 1st
- One weekly flight from Wuhan to Taipei Taoyuan will resume on March 6th
Given the current situation in Wuhan, it is difficult to predict what will happen and when the airport will be open again. China Southern has published its schedule and is ready to resume flights in March.
What do you think? Are they being overly optimistic, or have they calculated correctly? Please let us know what you think in the comments.
“The schedule information in this article was originally published by Routesonline”