Photo: The Puzzler
The suspension of flights to and from Sharm el-Sheikh has been extended until the end of November.
Flights were initially cancelled at the end of last week, under advice from the Foreign Office, as UK intelligence found that a Russian plane crash earlier this month was likely caused by a bomb.
Authorities were working to send flights to the airport near the popular Egyptian resort to repatriate stranded holidaymakers. Over 5,000 tourists have returned home since the rescue flights started, with another six flights expected to operate throughout today.
Commercial passenger flights, though, were all suspended. Now, EasyJet, Monarch, Thomson Airways and Thomas Cook have all confirmed that they will continue to cancel outbound flights up to 25th November. British Airways will also be suspending flights until 23rd November.
“We recognise this is a very frustrating situation and apologise for the inconvenience this is causing our customers,” a spokesperson for Monarch told Sky News .
Tour operators and airlines are expected to cover costs of extended stays, with holidaymakers affected advised to contact their providers for more information.
At the same time, Nationwide has temporarily extended its travel insurance cover for customers affected by grounded flights to Sharm el-Sheikh in order to guarantee consideration of any claims not honoured by travel providers. In line with Government advice against all but essential air travel to the popular Egyptian tourist destination, the Society is warning customers to avoid flying there at this time, but it is temporarily extending its standard travel insurance cover so that FlexAccount current account will be automatically upgraded to include flight cancellation.
Chris Rhodes, Nationwide’s Retail Director, says: “Following Government advice, we would urge all travellers to keep up-to-date with the situation in Sharm el-Sheikh and to consider cancelling their trip in light of the latest advice. By temporarily extending our level of cover, we are giving our customers the reassurance they need that if they are unable to fly then we are committed to considering their claim if they are denied refunds.”