Several airlines have announced this week that they are waiving flight-change fees due to coronavirus concerns.
Cayman Airways is waiving fees this month for customers who change their travel plans because of concerns about flying internationally during the coronavirus outbreak.
In a statement issued Monday evening, the airline said it had been closely monitoring developments related to the COVID-19 virus and was working with the Cayman Islands Health Services Authority and other public health officials and industry authorities “to ensure the continued safety of CAL passengers, as well as all staff and crew”.
To accommodate customers who need to make changes to their travel plans, the airline will waive change fees if the Cayman Airways ticket was purchased before 3 March and if the travel is scheduled from 2-31 March.
The airline said travel can be rebooked within the validity of the original ticket, but changes must be made on or before 31 March.
New Cayman Airways tickets purchased from 3-16 March will not be subject to a change fee, the airline said. However, such tickets will be non-refundable. “This waiver of change fees will apply for tickets purchased during this time frame for travel up to June 1, 2020,” the airline said.
Cayman Airways pointed out that while change fees will be waived, fare differences may still apply.
Caribbean Airlines, which added Grand Cayman to its list of destinations in December last year, said in a statement that it is allowing people travelling on its aircraft with onward connections to/from mainland China, Iran, Italy, Japan, South Korea and Singapore, to rebook their tickets without change fees.
The airlines said while authorities had not issued travel restrictions, the airline is working directly with health and security officials to keep updated on the best implemented practice when dealing with coronavirus,
The airline’s operation team is implementing a contingency plan in the event of any future disruptions, the company said.
JetBlue is also waiving its change and cancel fees for customers. This applies to all new bookings made between 27 Feb. and 11 March for travel through 1 June, the airline said.
It added that while there are no current travel restrictions to the locations it serves, the airline assured customers that if they book with JetBlue, changes or cancellations will be allowed without penalty.
Southwest Airlines, which operates flights between Fort Lauderdale and Grand Cayman, stated on its website that it does not fly to Europe or Asia, and there are no travel restrictions to any of the locations it serves. Southwest does not charge customers a fee to change or cancel flights if a person cancels a flight “at least 10 minutes prior to the scheduled departure”.
The airline has not suspended any scheduled flights or routes due to coronavirus concerns, but said on its website that it “will continue to closely monitor the situation, making any adjustments to [its] operations, as necessary”.
American Airlines and Sunwing Airlines, both of which fly to the Cayman Islands, also announced they are following procedures which include waiving change fees because of any travel restrictions.