January 31, 2020
The outbreak of coronavirus, a pneumonia-like illness that was first identified in Wuhan, China, has created a cascade of travel warnings and cancellations. The United States is conducting screenings for coronavirus at 20 airports, and the U.S. State Department is recommending that people reconsider travel to China. Outbound travel from China has been halted by the Chinese government, and NTA President Catherine Prather reports that several NTA China Inbound Program tour operators have received cancellations from their Chinese partners. “With so many Chinese agents dealing with cancelations and refunds, NTA members can help by being lenient with them at this critical time,” she said.
As an example, Tom White, director of sales & outreach for the U.S. Space & Rocket Center in Huntsville, Alabama, reported that they have lost two groups (a total of 60 students) scheduled to arrive from China on Feb 2. The attraction will reschedule or provide refunds upon request.
According to Jim Magrath, general manager of specialty sales for Delta Air Lines (NTA’s official airline partner), Delta has implemented a special waiver program for travel from and to China from Jan. 24 to Apr. 30. Customers who may be impacted due to the coronavirus health concerns in China may use special waiver codes to rebook or change their flights before March 31, 2020. More information >>
Delta Air Lines, American Airlines and United Airlines have temporarily suspended all daily flights to and from China. Some Chinese travelers who arrived in the U.S. before Jan. 27 might have difficulties finding flights going back to China. Chinese Embassy has released hotline information to assist Chinese citizens. More information>>
NTA is monitoring the impact of the virus outbreak as well as the suspension of group tours from China, as decided by the Chinese Ministry of Culture and Tourism. If you’re affected, please fill out the survey and help us to better determine the scale of the impact. Take the survey>>
For more information, follow the links below:
U.S. Travel: Emergency Preparedness and Response
U.S. State Department: China Travel Advisory
U.S. Centers for Disease Control
World Health Organization: daily situation reports
World map of confirmed cases