HANOI, 8 January 2021: Vietnam issued a new directive this week suspending flights from countries that have recorded cases infected by a new variant of the SARS-CoV-19 virus.
On 5 January, Vietnam’s Prime Minister issued the directive that includes instructions to suspend flights from countries that have been particularly adversely affected by new variants of the virus.
In the meantime, commercial flights to and from Vietnam remain very limited even though many airline websites still allow online booking from Vietnam.
Travel advisories warn travellers to check carefully before booking and paying for fares in advance that the flights are guaranteed to fly.
Flights and transit arrangements are still prone to changes and cancellation without notice and airlines are slow to refund unused fares preferring to give travellers new travel dates later in the year that might not materialise.
Vietnam first suspended inbound international commercial flights last March, but the government has been operating repatriation flights to bring home Vietnamese citizens stuck abroad during the pandemic.
The PM ordered authorities to come up with a list of countries where the additional suspension of flights could continue due to the exposure to the new Covid-19 variant.
The variant is prevalent in the UK and South Africa, but cases have been reported in Singapore and Thailand although the infected passengers have been successfully isolated.