COVID-19 Fear: 750 Austrians Brought back Home by Plane

Lifestyle & TravelHealth ♦ Published: March 18, 2020; 18:39 ♦ (Vindobona)

According to the Austrian Broadcasting Corporation (ORF), about 750 Austrians who were stranded abroad due to the coronavirus pandemic have been flown back to Vienna in cooperation with the Foreign Ministry and two airlines. It is not clear who will bear the costs.

Austrians brought back home by plane: In total, more than 1,300 persons have been repatriated to Austria so far. / Picture: © Wikipedia / Marcela

Approximately 600 people have been picked up from Gran Canaria, Tenerife and Egypt.

This had been done in cooperation with Austrian Airlines and Lauda Motion, which, as reported, have suspended their regular flights these days. 

"Around 150 tourists returned from Amsterdam, Moscow and Kiev in cooperation with other states," said Foreign Minister Schallenberg to ORF.

From Wednesday, Austrian Airlines will no longer operate scheduled flights.

The airport will be shut down to emergency operations in order to ensure that the coronavirus is contained as much as possible.

The planes would remain on the ground for the time being. Austrian Airlines is, however, "ready at any time for emergency flights and recalls", the AUA spokeswoman explained to ORF.

According to the Foreign Ministry, the operation would take several days.

Return flights were already carried out yesterday.

And further flights will follow in the coming days, the Foreign Minister told ORF.

In total, more than 1,300 persons have been repatriated to Austria so far.