37 Singapore-Manila flights cancelled or rescheduled

Affected airlines include Singapore Airlines, Scoot, Jetstar Airways and Philippine Airlines, according to Changi Airport's website.
Affected airlines include Singapore Airlines, Scoot, Jetstar Airways and Philippine Airlines, according to Changi Airport's website.ST PHOTO: LIM YAOHUI

At least 37 flights between Singapore and Manila were cancelled or rescheduled yesterday after a volcano erupted south of the Philippine capital, Manila, forcing the closure of the Ninoy Aquino International Airport.

Flight operations have partially resumed, said the local airport authorities. Affected airlines included Singapore Airlines (SIA), Scoot, Jetstar Asia and Philippine Airlines, a check with Changi Airport's website showed.

Jetstar Asia cancelled scheduled flights between Singapore and Manila, as well as between Singapore and Clark, following the suspension of all flights at the airport in Manila, a Jetstar spokesman said. "We have contacted all impacted customers via e-mail and SMS and provided them with alternatives, including changing their date of travel or opting to receive a refund in the form of a flight voucher. We continue to monitor the situation closely."

Scoot also confirmed that several of its flights were affected by the volcanic activity. For instance, TR391 from Manila to Singapore, scheduled to depart on Sunday, was grounded due to the closure of the Ninoy Aquino International Airport. It was re-timed to leave Manila yesterday afternoon, said a Scoot spokesman.

"We will continue to monitor the situation closely. Customers are encouraged to check their e-mails registered with us, as well as Scoot's website," said the spokesman. "As the situation remains uncertain, customers are encouraged to prepare for possible contingencies in their travel plans, including purchasing travel insurance."

Philippine Airlines cancelled at least three flights and rescheduled at least two between Singapore and Manila. The Straits Times has contacted SIA and other affected airlines for more information.

Travel agencies also said they were monitoring the situation closely. Chan Brothers Travel told The Straits Times that it currently did not have any travel groups in the Philippines and no customers were affected. The agency has also not received any cancellations or changes in tour plans.

"Customer safety is our utmost priority, and we are closely monitoring the local situation (in the Philippines) to assess its continual development by keeping in touch with our ground operators and airline partners for information as it streams in," said Ms Victoria Chong, the company's marketing communications executive. "If required, necessary changes to flights and itineraries will be made in order to allow our travellers to continue their programmes as scheduled as far as possible."

Correction note: This article has been updated with the latest information on the affected flights.

A version of this article appeared in the print edition of The Straits Times on January 14, 2020, with the headline '37 S'pore-Manila flights cancelled or rescheduled'. Print Edition | Subscribe