NEW YORK: Delta Air Lines and American Airlines are temporarily suspending some flights between US airports and Milan because of the spread of the novel coronavirus in parts of Italy, the two carriers announced.
Delta is suspending flights between New York's busy John F. Kennedy International Airport and Milan Malpensa, the largest airport in northern Italy and a major hub for Alitalia, the airline said in a statement on Sunday (Mar 1).
Delta's last New York-to-Milan flight will take off on Monday, while the last flight in the opposite direction is scheduled for Tuesday. Service is set to resume on May 1 or 2.
Delta added that flights between Rome and Atlanta were not affected.
American Airlines said late Saturday that it was suspending service between New York and Milan as well as between Miami and Milan until Apr 25, citing a "reduction in demand."
Both airlines said passengers will have a choice of rebooking on a later flight or being reimbursed.
US authorities on Saturday asked Americans not to travel to the areas in Italy and South Korea hardest-hit by the virus.
Both Delta and American, as well as the third big US carrier, United Airlines, had previously reduced or suspended service to China, where the epidemic broke out in late December, as well as to several other Asian countries.
As of Sunday at 17h00 GMT, the number of cases of coronavirus in the world stood at 88,257, including 2,996 deaths, in 66 countries and territories, according to a tally compiled by AFP from official sources.
Italy has reported 1,694 cases and 34 deaths. The biggest cluster of cases is in the Lombardy region in the country's north.