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Alaska Airlines suspends change and cancellation fees amid coronavirus worries

  • Author: Alex DeMarban
  • Updated: February 29
  • Published February 28

In this Thursday, Feb. 27, 2020 photo, a traveler wears a mask while waiting for a flight at Dallas Fort Worth International Airport in Texas. (John Roark/The Idaho Post-Register via AP)

As concerns about the new coronavirus cause travelers to change plans, Alaska Airlines said it will not charge change and cancellation fees for the next two weeks.

The suspension covers new bookings as of Thursday, extending through March 12 for travel through June 1. The policy includes the airline’s Saver fares, which typically do not permit changes or cancellations.

“If you book a flight prior to March 12, and then decide by that date to change or cancel your trip, you’ll receive full travel credit to fly with us later on – up to one year from the issuance of the credit,” the airline said in a statement.

"Fare differences may apply," the statement said.

“We understand that information about the coronavirus is creating confusion and anxiety for some," said Andrew Harrison, executive vice president of Alaska Airlines. “Our first goal is to keep our guests safe, and offer peace of mind when it comes to flying with us.”

Alaska Airlines said it is communicating with federal agencies like the U.S. Centers for Disease Control “to continually evaluate our preventative processes.”

The new virus, which originated in China, has killed close to 3,000 and infected more than 80,000.

More than 60 cases have been confirmed in the U.S. and none in Alaska, according to the CDC.