Macau airport operating just 11 routes after airlines axe flights

The outbreak of the Covid-19 coronavirus and the consequent restrictions imposed by many countries and regions in regard to border crossings have led to the suspension of the majority of flights in and out of Macau.

As of yesterday, the Macau International Airport (MIA) had only 11 routes in operation, with most of the flights operated by home carrier, Air Macau.

The Air Macau flights to Shanghai, Beijing, Bangkok, Hanoi, Nanning, and Taipei were part of a long list of routes operated by the carrier that have been temporarily suspended. Others, however, remain open.

The major routes still serving travelers are those that connect to Bangkok in Thailand, and Taipei in Taiwan. Two airlines operate routes to these cities:  Bangkok routes are being operated by Air Macau and Air Asia, while Air Macau and Eva Airways service the Taipei route.

The remaining flight routes in operation are all for Southeast Asian countries with Air Asia flying to Kuala Lumpur (Malaysia), Lanmei Airlines to Cambodia’s Sihanoukville and JC Cambodia International to the capital city, Phnom Penh.

As the Times reported, most of the other flights in and out of Macau will remain suspended for all of March with a total of 24 carriers announcing full cancellations until the end of the month.

A map of all Macau International Airport connections, including those suspended

Among those who have announced suspensions is local operator Air Macau, as well as nine mainland carriers: China Eastern Airlines, China Southern Airlines, Juneyao Airlines, Shanghai Airlines, Zhejiang Loong Airlines, Hainan Airlines, Xiamen Airlines, Shenzhen Airlines, and Spring Airlines.
Taiwan’s Eva Airways, Tiger Air Taiwan and Starlux Airlines have also announced the cancellation of several routes and schedules.

South Korea’s Jejuair, Air Busan, Jin Air, Tway Air, and Eastar Jet have followed Philippines Airlines and Cebu Pacific Air, from the Philippines, in continuing to keep their aircrafts grounded.

Flights to Vietnam by Vietnam Airlines and Bamboo Airways have also been affected, with all routes from the two carriers being removed from departure announcement boards.

In the neighboring region of Hong Kong, the scenario does not seem any brighter, especially for its flag-carrier, Cathay Pacific.

According to a report from South China Morning Post, the Cathay Pacific Group has currently about half of its fleet sitting on the tarmac at any given time and has scrapped more than three-quarters of its weekly flights this month alone.

The report adds that the situation for Cathay seems not to have reached its lowest point yet, quoting sources within the company that suggested more planes could be soon grounded as more flight schedulers face cuts.

In reply to the SCMP, a spokesperson from Cathay admitted that the company is continuously assessing the fleet to adjust to market demands.

Last week, Cathay informed that around 19,000 of the company’s 25,000 employees would take unpaid leave to cope with the lack of service demand.

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