ANA Suspends Tokyo to Mumbai/Chennai flights-3 things to know

Japan's ANA has suspended flights to Chennai and Mumbai from Tokyo Narita. ANA was offering a return ticket as low as 19000-23000 INR from Chennai and Mumbai [details] and many would have planned a trip to Japan this summer (Cherry blossom season) or later. The fares were very tempting given it is a full service airline, offering direct flights on nice dreamliner aircrafts.

However these routes now stand suspended, albeit temporarily. Here're a few things you should know.

1. Why ANA has suspended flights to India?

As you are aware few things have changed recently. Japan had lots of Corona Virus cases and this has scared everyone. Govt of India has suspended all visas given to Japan nationals (also Korean, Italian and Irani people) in a bit to avoid corona virus risk. This means many passengers who have booked Tokyo to Chennai/Mumbai/Delhi ticket will NOT be able to fly as their Visa has been invalidated.

2. What exactly has been cancelled/suspended?

Effectively ANA has announced suspension of flights to Mumbai and Chennai for about 10 days.
Flights to Delhi are reduced to 3 times a week from 7.
Outside of the dates mentioned above, bookings are open and flights may resume from April, but depending on how corona virus spread and Visa restrictions imposed by India pan out.

Read official press release here.

3. What to do?
If you were booked on these cancelled flights for the month of March, your options are as below:

Option 1. Take full refund: If you are not keen to fly because of Corona Virus, you can make use of this and take full refund. Else had the flight been operating you wouldn't have got full refund.

Option 2. Reroute via Delhi. ANA should be able to fly you to Tokyo on one of their Delhi-NRT flight with domestic leg served by Vistara or Air India. You can still travel to Japan but with some inconveniences.

Option 3: Reschedule: Assuming flights will be resumed from April/May, you can postpone your trip and hope that things return to normal by then.

If your bookings are from April, you will get clarity only by end of March. Do not book any non-refundable hotels. tours etc. Wait and watch till you have some clarity.

Here's hoping for return of normalcy soon. Do read this post to know about my recent international trip experience and if you should still travel or not.

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