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Saudia Denies June Flight Resumption Rumors


Saudi Airlines has denied that flights will resume in early June, despite the website showing domestic flights available for booking.

The airline said that it was awaiting official clearance from the authorities to restart air travel.

“Allowing booking on the company’s website from June 1 does not mean ending the flight suspension currently in effect due to the coronavirus pandemic,” Fahad Bahdailah, vice president of corporate communications at Saudi Airlines, told Al-Arabiya.

He added: “The closing of reservations happens automatically in the system. May reservations are closed, and subsequently June reservations will be closed.”

There has been no government decision to resume domestic flights in the Kingdom.

Mohammed Aslam Khan Jameel, supervisor at a travel agency in Riyadh, told Arab News: “We are yet to get the official confirmation from the government and the General Authority of Civil Aviation (GACA).”

He added: “When flights resume, there are certain precautionary measures directed by the GACA to be followed by all airlines, such as the middle seat remaining vacant and social distancing inside the aircrafts.

“All passengers and crew members are required to wear face masks and gloves and there will be no carry-on baggage allowed inside the aircraft.”

He said that there would be no change to ticket prices.

In a bid to slow down the spread of coronavirus, Saudi Arabia suspended international flights from March 15 and domestic flights from March 21.

The Kingdom has recently relaxed the coronavirus curfew, reopening shopping malls and other retail stores under strict new rules, including disinfection every 24 hours and a ban on customers paying with banknotes.

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Arab News

Arab News is Saudi Arabia's first English-language newspaper. It was founded in 1975 by Hisham and Mohammed Ali Hafiz. Today, it is one of 29 publications produced by Saudi Research & Publishing Company (SRPC), a subsidiary of Saudi Research & Marketing Group (SRMG).

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