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-   -   COVID19 UA-Schedule reductions to 10%; Waiver-No fee cancel/change for 2020 til 31May (https://www.flyertalk.com/forum/united-airlines-mileageplus/2005760-covid19-ua-schedule-reductions-10-waiver-no-fee-cancel-change-2020-til-31may.html)

dcsnowwake Jan 23, 20 7:51 am

I will start worrying when Formula1 thinks about cancelling Shanghai.....which means sadly I won't be going :( Off to a different race.

In all honesty, China actually doing what they are doing is pretty insane and a very good thing. SARS was a big coverup, and hope this stops the spread, just really bad timing with the lunar new year

baroqen Jan 23, 20 7:55 am

Looks like the travel waiver might have been expanded for all travel to/from China.

I apologize as I can't read this to 100% confirm, but I'm told it states that all airlines are instructed to give full refunds to any voluntary cancellations starting from midnight on the 24th.

???: ?????????

This is from the China equivalent of the FAA.

https://cimg6.ibsrv.net/gimg/www.fly...c4c59da95e.jpg

mozilla Jan 23, 20 8:47 am


Originally Posted by dcsnowwake (Post 31985219)
SARS was a big coverup, and hope this stops the spread, just really bad timing with the lunar new year

Well, China filed a casual low-priority report indicating a rise in pneumonia cases in Wuhan with the WHO on December 31. On January 6, the WHO was caught off guard when the WSJ broke the story that well suddenly there were 59 unexplained cases of pneumonia already and they were dealing with a completely new strain of virus. China begrudgingly confirmed that to the WHO on January 7 and only from that point on was the appropriate urgency level assigned.

They've been more forthcoming with data since, but it's safe to assume they're still underreporting the number of cases.

jsloan Jan 23, 20 9:29 am


Originally Posted by baroqen (Post 31985239)
Looks like the travel waiver might have been expanded for all travel to/from China.

I apologize as I can't read this to 100% confirm, but I'm told it states that all airlines are instructed to give full refunds to any voluntary cancellations starting from midnight on the 24th.

Here's a link to the Google Translate version of the full web version: https://translate.google.com/transla...23_200575.html


In order to do a good job in joint prevention and control of the new coronavirus pneumonia epidemic, the Civil Aviation Administration requires that from 00:00 on January 24, 2020, if passengers who have previously purchased civil aviation tickets have voluntarily refunded their tickets, each airline and its ticket sales agency Refunds are free of charge and no fees can be charged.



I'm not entirely sure how to interpret that. Did they intend to limit the scope to Wuhan flights? Are carriers allowed to institute a time limit? Or is this supposed to apply to every ticket for which the CAAC would have jurisdiction -- Chinese carriers worldwide, foreign carrier flights to/from China (mainland? Greater China?), Chinese passengers? Everyone who bought something from CTrip?

zitsky Jan 23, 20 9:45 am


Originally Posted by mozilla (Post 31984953)
Coronavirus infections do not progress to the flu, they progress to pneumonia. Every year in the US pneumonia kills more than 7 times the amount of people that the flu does. Additionally, while it is not perfect, there is prophylaxis available for the seasonal influenza, but not for the coronavirus.

The other risks are the "super-spreader" properties of the coronavirus that we've witnessed during the SARS epidemic. One infected but otherwise healthy person may survive the disease, but not before infecting more than 200 other people, many of whom will die.

China suffers from extremely poor hygiene standards which allow new strains of coronavirus to be easily transmitted from animal to human and subsequently from human to human. The best advice is to avoid all unnecessary travel to the affected area, and UA did make the right decision by issuing a (rare) refund waiver.

What is your definition of "many"? We shouldn't be cavalier about this, but we also shouldn't panic.

bigbellymonkey Jan 23, 20 10:21 am

Don't be too naive
At moment, CNN only reports 3 city under travel restriction. On Chinese social media and news, 8 cities in province of Hubei are in total lockdown now CPC will not lockdown 20-30M population randomly unless it`s necessary. One of the nearby city from Wuhan alreayd has 1200+ cases wiith fever. All the hospitals are full and they stopped taking new patients. Go read more before you post more here! All I can say is, this is serious stuff.

bocastephen Jan 23, 20 11:05 am

This virus is in the same family as SARS and MERS - with a significantly higher mortality rate than a "flu", especially in vulnerable patients.

There is considerable concern that the Chinese govt is lying about the extent of the pandemic, and it's shocking how fast this infection is spreading - it's definitely a serious issue. There is talk about the US quarantining anyone whose travel plans show a routing through an infected area, and I forecast that if this gets worse, not only will there be airline waivers for all of Asia coming soon, but all air travel between China and the USA (and possibly from China to Japan, Korea and other countries) may be halted, or significantly restricted with on-arrival quarantines.

zitsky Jan 23, 20 11:26 am


Originally Posted by bocastephen (Post 31985987)
This virus is in the same family as SARS and MERS - with a significantly higher mortality rate than a "flu", especially in vulnerable patients.

There is considerable concern that the Chinese govt is lying about the extent of the pandemic, and it's shocking how fast this infection is spreading - it's definitely a serious issue. There is talk about the US quarantining anyone whose travel plans show a routing through an infected area, and I forecast that if this gets worse, not only will there be airline waivers for all of Asia coming soon, but all air travel between China and the USA (and possibly from China to Japan, Korea and other countries) may be halted, or significantly restricted with on-arrival quarantines.

How is this different than when SARS became a big problem? Have governments learned their lesson and are being more strict about it?

WineCountryUA Jan 23, 20 12:02 pm

There are presently 15+ active threads on FT concerning Coronavirus, obviously of concern to travelers.

The China forum's Corona Virus
or the Hong Kong forum's Wuhan coronavirus outbreak — worries as it spread to HK & beyond may be the best for information about what is happening in the region

Many airlines servicing China / Asia region have threads on waivers

And not to be left out is OMNI's Coronavirus epidemic, worries for China/ Global GDP

For the United forum, let's not wander too far off UA traveler related discussion / information

WineCountryUA
UA coModerator

jimmielin Jan 23, 20 12:16 pm


Originally Posted by jsloan (Post 31985614)
Here's a link to the Google Translate version of the full web version: https://translate.google.com/transla...23_200575.html



I'm not entirely sure how to interpret that. Did they intend to limit the scope to Wuhan flights? Are carriers allowed to institute a time limit? Or is this supposed to apply to every ticket for which the CAAC would have jurisdiction -- Chinese carriers worldwide, foreign carrier flights to/from China (mainland? Greater China?), Chinese passengers? Everyone who bought something from CTrip?

I've heard from Air China (CA) phone support (in Chinese) that all tickets up to some time in March, including int'l and mileage redemptions can be refunded at absolutely no cost. The policy in the China national railway seems to be the same. It's basically a China FAA-equivalent mandated waiver of all change/refund fees nationwide. Some other carriers (AF, TG) presumably are following the rules and publishing waivers, so UA may be next.

STS-134 Jan 23, 20 12:20 pm

I'm surprised that UA hasn't expanded the waiver to at least include PEK and PVG. Anyone who wants to keep all of their flying on UA, and only books 016 tickets on UA metal, would have booked to either one of those airports and then either booked a flight to WUH on a separate ticket, OR would have planned to take the HSR to Wuhan. People planning on staying in the Tier 1 cities that UA flies to can then assess their personal tolerance for risk and decide if it's worth traveling. People planning to actually fly on to WUH on separate tickets or take the train to that city can then reschedule without penalty. Also, even though I once thought about it (to get PQD), I have never booked an intra-China 016 ticket using UA because the pricing they give for those flights is ridiculous. It's easily half the cost if you go through CA directly.

Last year, I flew in and out of PEK. The previous year, I flew into PEK once and into PVG once. All of these times, my actual destination was about 400-600 km from the airport I was flying into, and I don't think this type of travel pattern is that unusual for this part of the world. Makes me wonder if UA management actually realizes this. If I planned to travel to anywhere under the quarantine zone (which is still expanding) next week, I'd definitely cancel, because once I got in, I wouldn't be able to get back out.

jsloan Jan 23, 20 12:28 pm


Originally Posted by STS-134 (Post 31986263)
I'm surprised that UA hasn't expanded the waiver to at least include PEK and PVG. Anyone who wants to keep all of their flying on UA, and only books 016 tickets on UA metal, would have booked to either one of those airports and then either booked a flight to WUH on a separate ticket, OR would have planned to take the HSR to Wuhan.

While booking an intra-China ticket on 016 stock is surely unlikely, that doesn't mean that everyone booking to Wuhan would fly on separate tickets. In fact, I suspect that's a relatively unlikely way to travel unless you're planning to make several stops around Asia.

If I were going to Wuhan, and planning to fly UA, I'd just search for tickets to WUH. I did a search for AUS-WUH for a two-week, Tuesday-to-Tuesday stay in March, and I got Y fares as low as $739 (via PEK; last leg on CA) or $753 (via PVG; last leg on MU). There are also options via NRT on NH.

If I search for PEK for those same dates, it's $625, and PVG is $564. So, I'm not paying an outrageous premium to book on a single ticket. (Splitting the journey at PVG might be a little cheaper, but I'd lose protection against a delay).

bocastephen Jan 23, 20 12:28 pm


Originally Posted by STS-134 (Post 31986263)
Makes me wonder if UA management actually realizes this. If I planned to travel to anywhere under the quarantine zone (which is still expanding) next week, I'd definitely cancel, because once I got in, I wouldn't be able to get back out.

Oh, I think they know - and don't care. Their responsibility ends at the destination airport they let you off at, where you go from there is not their concern. If the issue spreads, which it appears to be, then UA really needs to add a blanket waiver for all of China.

jsloan Jan 23, 20 12:32 pm


Originally Posted by bocastephen (Post 31986291)
Oh, I think they know - and don't care. Their responsibility ends at the destination airport they let you off at, where you go from there is not their concern.

I suspect that if you called up and said that you wanted to change your ticket to PEK because you had a separate onward ticket to WUH, you'd probably get an agent to allow you a free change. A free refund -- probably not without a waiver. But, changing the ticket to go somewhere else, and paying the fare difference? You might need to HUCA once or twice, but I suspect you could find someone to make an exception.

STS-134 Jan 23, 20 12:33 pm


Originally Posted by jsloan (Post 31986289)
While booking an intra-China ticket on 016 stock is surely unlikely, that doesn't mean that everyone booking to Wuhan would fly on separate tickets. In fact, I suspect that's a relatively unlikely way to travel unless you're planning to make several stops around Asia.

If I were going to Wuhan, and planning to fly UA, I'd just search for tickets to WUH. I did a search for AUS-WUH for a two-week, Tuesday-to-Tuesday stay in March, and I got Y fares as low as $739 (via PEK; last leg on CA) or $753 (via PVG; last leg on MU). There are also options via NRT on NH.

If I search for PEK for those same dates, it's $625, and PVG is $564. So, I'm not paying an outrageous premium to book on a single ticket. (Splitting the journey at PVG might be a little cheaper, but I'd lose protection against a delay).

Ah, I should clarify. If one wants to spend a couple of days near PEK or PVG, and then travel on to another city, then the price of the standalone ticket from PEK/PVG to elsewhere in China using UA as the booking agency is outrageous. Plus, once you're out and about in the city, it's often easier to just hop on the train than it is to go back to the airport. But anyway, my point is, there are plenty of reasons why one might not hold a UA ticket all the way through to WUH or any other city but be planning to visit the area regardless.


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