Canadians are getting trapped in China as airlines suspend flights
As of yesterday, Air Canada has cancelled all of its flights from major cities in China — leaving many Canadians trapped in areas affected by coronavirus.
And while Canada is sending a plane soon to evacuate citizens, many passengers stuck overseas are feeling abandoned.
Since Air Canada is overwhelmed with requests for customer service, it's impossible for the airline to reply to everyone — and many Canadians stuck in China are frustrated by the lack of communication.
So @AirCanada cancels our flight from Shanghai to Toronto, doesn't contact us, Chinese customer service number is disconnected. Doesn't reply to DM or facebook. Tickets home are now $3000+ or don't exist. I now have no way to return home and no way to call airline. What do we do?— Derek (@CANworldwide) January 30, 2020
Some Canadians are worried for family members that are trapped overseas.
My father is scheduled to fly back to Toronto from Shanghai on Feb 17. He has not been contacted by Air Canada. Air Canada phone reservations are down. I told him to reach out to Canada consulate. What else should we be doing?— Adam S (@dkidsun) January 29, 2020
And many people are scared that their loved ones won't be able to get back to Canada anytime soon.
With a full customer service shutdown to boot!— Steven Chen (@_stevenchen) January 30, 2020
Wife is now trapped in China with no lines of communication to get more info.
Most Canadians trapped overseas just really want to come home.
Thanks for stranding me and my girlfriend three days before our flight was scheduled to leave. And having a phone number in China that goes nowhere so I can’t even reach anyone to rebook or help us get home. I just want to go home.— David Wood (@KaSlammo) January 30, 2020
And customers trying to phone the airlines are being put on hold for 90+ minutes.
After over two hours on hold. Finally I spoke to someone. I need call again today 😭— Miranda A (@eternalmira) January 30, 2020
Plus, there's a lot of confusion over which flights are actually cancelled.
My husband’s return flight from Beijing to Vancouver is on February 5th. Is that flight canceled too?— stevepancake (@stevepancake1) January 29, 2020
With the increasing spread of coronavirus, however, many Canadians are relieved that flights are being suspended from China — and the ethical and economic questions surrounding flight suspensions right now are tricky.
Hopefully Air Canada will be able to provide its customers with more information as the situation progresses.
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