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The Governor’s Office sent out a reassurance Thursday morning that Sunday’s British Airlines flight to London will depart Cayman as planned.
“The Governor’s Office has confirmed with British Airways that the flight due to depart Owen Roberts International Airport, bound for London Heathrow, on Sunday, 22 March will definitely operate as planned. All existing bookings on the flight will be honoured,” the office wrote.
“British Airways are currently updating their website and booking details will reappear in due course.”
The Governor’s Office later added that seats remain available on the Sunday flight.
“British Airways have confirmed with the Governor’s Office that there are still seats available on the British Airways flight due to depart Owen Roberts International Airport, bound for London Heathrow, on Sunday 22 March,” the office stated.
UPDATE at 7:45pm, 18 March – British Airways confirms Sunday flight will operate
A British Airways public relations representative has confirmed that flight BA252 will fly as scheduled on Sunday.
“The system is being updated to indicate this,” the representative wrote the Cayman Compass.
Passengers booked for the flight will travel as planned.
“This is a fast moving situation,” British Airways wrote in a statement. “We recommend that all customers check for the latest on their flight on ba.com.”
The London flight will operate in both directions – to Cayman and back to London.
Confusion over British Airways incorrect ‘cancellation’ notices
Confusion reigned among passengers booked for the final British Airways flight out of Grand Cayman on Sunday, before the island’s airport closes for three weeks, when travellers received notifications Wednesday that flight BA252 was cancelled.
Governor Martyn Roper advised the notice may have been sent out by mistake, as the result of a website error. A British Airways representative, however, incorrectly told the Cayman Compass that the flight was cancelled and there was no website error.
Jacqueline Rawes, who is travelling with her husband Richard Simmons, said she had first heard a rumour of the cancellation, so she checked her booking online.
“It said cancelled and then we got a text from British Airways,” Rawes said.
The text, confirming the cancellation, provided two BA numbers to contact. Rawes said she had not been able to get through because the phone lines are busy.
The news caught government leaders off guard during Wednesday’s press update on coronavirus.
Both Premier Alden McLaughlin and Governor Martyn Roper initially said they did not believe the flight had actually been cancelled.
“We’ve had no indication of that whatsoever,” Governor Roper said.
The premier added, “I am certain that is not the case. We just got confirmation yesterday.”
Minutes later, however, the premier stepped back on his statement, saying he had just received a message confirming the British Airways flight cancellation.
“We have to find out what the issue is,” he said, adding that the notice was a new development.
Governor Roper later said that while he is not able to speak on behalf of British Airways, his office has been told the issue was a website error that would not be able to be corrected until Thursday morning.
Affected passengers began writing the Cayman Compass, worried about how they would leave the territory before all international travel ceased Sunday, 22 March, at 11:59pm.
“We really need to get off the island,” Rawes said. “I have elderly parents. I don’t know where to start with all this quite frankly. It’s a disaster.”
Rawes said she was worried about overstaying her tourist visa but hoped government would be compassionate with those left stranded against their will.
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