Travel Gossip: Summer Vacation Flight Disruptions

By Billy Jiang, August 11, 2023

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Summer is in full swing, and folks from Guangdong Province have taken their love for adventure global!

About 70% of China's jet-setters so far this year are from Guangdong Province, proving that when it comes to travel, Guangdong folks are the first ones in line.

However, the picture isn't all rosy for travelers; with the gradual resumption of international flights by major airlines, some routes have experienced reductions, causing inconveniences for those planning trips.

Starting in August, the popular tourist destination of Bali has seen a reduction in flight options, with four cities - Fuzhou, Hangzhou, Kunming, and Xi'an, having suspended flights to Bali. 

Additionally, there is a decrease in flights on the Guangzhou-to-Bali JT route. 

While Bali still offers visa-on-arrival services, the convenience has diminished compared to the pre-pandemic days.

READ MORE: Travel Gossip: Indonesia Halts Visa-Free Policy

Nevertheless, there is hope, as the Indonesian government is reevaluating its visa-free policy for 159 countries, aiming for an early restoration.

In another travel twist, Singaporean passport holders gained a boost as 15-day visa-free access to China was reinstated. 

READ MORE: Travel Gossip: Visa-Free Policy Resumed for Singapore & Brunei

This move has sparked increased interest among residents of the island nation to explore China.

However, Singapore Airlines recently made a surprising announcement that, starting October 29, flights between Singapore and Chengdu will be temporarily suspended.

On August 1, the airline shared the news on Weibo that the suspension affects the SQ843 flight from Chengdu to Singapore on Tuesdays and the SQ842 flight from Singapore to Chengdu. 

Passengers affected by these cancellations can seek assistance through different booking channels, rebook flights, or request refunds.

Singapore Airlines has reportedly rebooked "the next available flights" for impacted passengers, maintaining the original departure dates while changing the departure or arrival airports to Shanghai. 

This adjustment has not been well-received by passengers who had already made plans; some are expressing dissatisfaction, questioning why they are being sent to different destinations without additional accommodations. 

A frustrated passenger departing from Singapore exclaimed, "How am I supposed to reach Chengdu? What about the rest of my itinerary? If the airline arbitrarily cancels flights, aren't they supposed to provide alternative flights to the same destination? We're in a dire situation! Even if we agree to fly to Shanghai, shouldn't they at least cover the cost of getting us to our intended destination?"

This traveler highlighted that itinerary changes require extra time and effort and, if they are unable to secure flights from Shanghai to Chengdu on the same day, the entire family might need to spend an extra night in a hotel, incurring additional expenses.

Have your recently booked flights been affected by cancellations? Share your experiences with us in the comments. For more updates on travel, follow our WeChat Official Account, ThatsGBA.

[Cover image by Billy Jiang/That's]

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