Lion Air Cancels Flights Again As Passengers Were 'Unable to Carry Out' Coronavirus Protocol

Passengers are required to produce documents proving they do not have coronavirus.

Lion Air plane
Photo: Ulet Ifansasti/Getty Images

After less than a month of reintroducing flights, Indonesian airline Lion Air is canceling them again, with no new restart date in sight.

The airline announced that these flights will, once again, be unavailable due to passengers not following new guidelines to combat the spread of coronavirus.

“Many prospective passengers were unable to carry out air travel because they did not complete the required documents and conditions during the Corona Virus Disease 2019 (COVID-19) pandemic alert period,” it said in the statement by Lion Air.

This cancellation applies not only to short-haul flights but to international flights as well, including flights to Saudi Arabia, China, Malaysia, and Singapore, CNN reported.

Since it restarted flights on May 10 and implemented many health and safety policies in light of the ongoing pandemic. According to CNN, Lion Air started blocking middle seats to ensure social distancing, deep-cleaned planes, and replacing HEPA filters on flights where there was any suspicion of an ill passenger. These measures were not only to protect passengers but employees of Lion Air as well.

The documents passengers are required to provide are supposed to show that they are free of coronavirus, according to The Jakarta Post. Or, if applicable, passengers would be required to show a letter proving a family emergency.

The outlet also reported that Lion Air had previously suspended flights from May 27 to May 31 due to the confusion before restarting, before stopping again on June 5.

While the last-minute cancellation is likely inconvenient for travelers, Lion Air said in its statement that customers will be able to receive a full refund or may reschedule their flight with no extra fees. Customers should contact the airline directly via phone or email, which are listed in the airline’s statement.

The airline noted it, “continuously monitors the progress of the situation, collects data and information and implements the various anticipating steps needed to prepare for the upcoming flight service, in order to keep Lion Air Group's flight operations under applicable provisions of safety and security aspects, continue to implement health protocols according to the provisions and does not lead to the spread of COVID-19.”

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