Flights canceled after Beijing raises emergency response level

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Hundreds of flights to and from Beijing have been canceled on Wednesday as the capital raised its public health emergency response from the third to the second level due to the new cluster of local COVID-19 infections.

As of 9 am on Wednesday, about 850 inbound and outbound flights from Beijing Capital International Airport and Beijing Daxing International Airport have been canceled, according to data from aviation statistics provider VariFlight.

Interprovincial shuttle bus services at Beijing Capital International Airport and Beijing Daxing International Airport have also been suspended.

Airlines including Air China and China Southern Airlines said on Tuesday evening they would offer full refunds to passengers who purchased flights from or to Beijing.

China’s railway operator will allow passengers, who booked train service to or from Beijing as of Tuesday, to cancel their tickets nationwide without charging fees as well.

The measure will be taken starting from Wednesday, as part of the efforts to facilitate Beijing’s epidemic prevention and control work, said China State Railway Group on Wednesday.

Under the policy, passengers who have previously purchased train tickets at railway stations, online railway ticket-booking platform 12306 or other channels may cancel their tickets and get refunds for free. The purchases of railway accident insurance shall be handled together, the company said.

Some long-distance interprovincial buses heading to and from Beijing have stopped operations.

Beijing reported 31 new confirmed domestically transmitted COVID-19 cases and six new asymptomatic cases on Tuesday, the municipal health commission said Wednesday.

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