Philippine travel ban: Airlines offer refunds, rebooking options

Dhanusha Gokulan (Principal Correspondent)/Dubai Filed on May 15, 2021 | Last updated on May 15, 2021 at 12.12 am
Passengers at Manila airport. — Reuters file

Emirates says affected customers should contact their booking agent or Emirates call centre for rebooking.

Airlines have announced rebooking and cancellation options for passengers who have been impacted by the ban imposed by the Philippine government on travellers arriving from the UAE and Oman.

Following the announcement, UAE’s national carrier Etihad Airways said: “In line with the latest directives issued by the government of the Philippines, passengers from the UAE and Oman will not be accepted for travel to Manila effective Friday, May 14 at 12.59pm UAE time until further notice.” However, Filipino citizens who are part of the government repatriation programme are exempted from the ban.

Dubai carrier Emirates also halted flights to Manila. An airline spokesperson said: “Passengers whose journey originates from the UAE, including Filipino nationals, will not be accepted for travel to all points in the Philippines...Affected customers should contact their booking agent or Emirates call centre for rebooking.”

Philippine carrier Cebu Pacific issued a similar advisory for its passengers.

It said: “Cebu Pacific has cancelled its flights to and from Dubai starting May 15 to 31. Affected passengers are being informed via contact details provided in the booking.”

Guests are being offered unlimited rebooking with no change fee and passengers also have the option to store ‘a travel fund’ in their virtual wallet for up to two years.

For refunds, passengers may have to wait up to seven months from the date of request.

However, the airline will continue to operate its other domestic and international flights as scheduled.


Dhanusha Gokulan

Originally from India, Dhanusha Gokulan has been working as a journalist for 10 years. She has a keen interest in writing about issues that plague the common person and will never turn down a human interest story. She completed her Bachelor in Arts in Journalism, Economics and English Literature from Mangalore University in 2008. In her spare time, she dabbles with some singing/songwriting, loves travelling and Audible is her favourite mobile application. Tweet at her @wordjunkie88

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