New COVID-19 outbreak puts a halt to more domestic flights

Given COVID-19 developments, the Ministry of Transport (MoT) has approved the suspension of passenger flights to Con Dao Island and those linking Quang Ninh and Gia Lai provinces with Ho Chi Minh City.

Accordingly, passenger flights to and from Con Dao Island of southern Ba Ria - Vung Tau province will be halted from 5pm on June 5, except for helicopter trips between Vung Tau city and the island.

On June 3, the provincial People’s Committee proposed the MoT, the Civil Aviation Authority of Vietnam (CAAV), and airlines suspend flights to Con Dao, explaining that the island’s healthcare capacity remains modest while Con Dao is located far away from the mainland, which may hamper the delivery of assistance to this place if COVID-19 is detected there.

There are currently many direct flights carrying tourists from Ho Chi Minh City, Hanoi, Da Nang, Can Tho, Vinh, and Thanh Hoa to Con Dao, which has a population of 10,000.

Meanwhile, flights connecting the northern province of Quang Ninh and the Central Highlands province of Gia Lai with HCM City have been stopped temporarily since June 5 until further notice.

Earlier, leaders of these provinces also proposed the MoT allow the suspension, saying that recent COVID-19 outbreaks have forced HCM City to impose social distancing across the city in line with the Prime Minister’s Directive 15/CT-TTg and lockdowns on Go Vap district and Thanh Loc ward of District 12 under Directive 16/CT-TTg.

Flights between northern Hai Phong city and HCM City have also been halted.

The MoT requested the CAAV to coordinate with the ministry’s Health Administration of Transport and relevant agencies of the provinces’ People’s Committees to keep a close watch on the pandemic’s developments so as to make timely adjustments to air transport plans.

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