Philippines Airlines To Cancel Flights As Crew Members Become Victim of Omicron Surge

Brian Bukowski, CC BY-SA 2.0 , via Wikimedia Commons

LONDON – Philippines Airlines has issued an advisory stating it will be canceling several of its domestic and international scheduled flight operations on the grounds of staff shortage which is gripping the airline as most of its crew has been contaminated with the Omicron variant.

The move has also been taken on the grounds of constant cancellations and rebooking occurring from its passengers, as they too are testing positive for Covid-19 and are undergoing self-isolation.

The statement issued by the airline stated as, “With the ongoing surge of Covid-19 cases, we are receiving more calls from passengers who need to rebook or cancel their flights because they have tested positive or are in precautionary isolation.”

“At the same time, many of our frontline team members are unable to report for work. We are thus facing challenges in sustaining our full regular operations and ensuring prompt service for all our customers.”  

The airline spokesperson informed the local media house that less than 10% of the PAL frontline cabin crew on rosters have tested positive or have kept themselves in precautionary isolation due to exposure to Covid-19 positive patients.

The airline and the airport are making sure passengers are provided with all the information.

The airport is also putting up tents for the stranded passengers, where they can stay as they await their turn to enter the PAL ticketing office in Manila International Airport, said the Spokesperson from Philippines Airlines.   

The PAL has urged its passengers to use its official social media handle to keep monitoring their flight status, as there could be possible cancellation due to a ‘very fluid situation.’

Up to this point, there are over 20 international routes that have been affected due to PAL cancellations.

These routes include Sydney, Tokyo, Melbourne, and Singapore. The Philippines is currently grabbed by increasing cases of Covid-19 cases, with capital city Manila is facing a 50% positivity rate.

The total Covid-19 cases in the country have crossed beyond 3 million since the outbreak in 2020.

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Ajinkya Gurav

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