SEATTLE — Delta Airlines is temporarily canceling some of its flights to China, including flights from Seattle to Beijing and Shanghai, due to the coronavirus outbreak.
Delta said it will reduce the number of weekly flights from the U.S. to China from 42 to 21 beginning February 6. The flight reduction is expected to last until April 30. However, the airline said it will “continue to monitor the situation and may make additional adjustments as the situation continues to evolve.”
The airline has daily service connecting Beijing and Detroit and Seattle, and Shanghai and Atlanta, Detroit, Los Angeles and Seattle, according to a press release. Delta said it will offer three to four weekly flights on the same routes.
Beginning Feb. 1, Delta will be reaching out to accommodate affected customers on alternate flights. The reduced schedule is expected to be reflected on Delta.com starting on Feb. 1.
Delta will also waive the change fee waiver for customers wanting to change their travel plans to China due to the coronavirus outbreak.
Delta isn’t the first airline to reduce or suspend flights to China due to the virus. Earlier this week, British Airways halted all flights to mainland China, and American Airlines suspended Los Angeles flights to and from Shanghai and Beijing.
Several other airlines, including Finnair, Hong Kong-based Cathay Pacific, and Singapore-based Jetstar Asia, are also reducing the number of flights to China.
The CDC announced Monday it would begin enhanced coronavirus screening at its 20 quarantine stations across the U.S., which includes a station at Sea-Tac International Airport.
China has cut off access to Wuhan and more than a dozen other cities to prevent people from leaving and spreading the virus further.
More people in China are now confirmed to have been infected by the coronavirus than were sickened by mainland China's SARS outbreak in 2002-2003. That means the number of confirmed cases has now jumped to at least 5,974 which has surpassed the 5,327 cases with SARS.
The coronavirus has now killed at least 170 people in China.
The Associated Press contributed to this report.