Air Canada is suspending flights to and from Italy.
The airline’s last flight to Rome is scheduled to take off from Toronto on Tuesday, with the final return flight departing Rome for Montreal on Wednesday. Air Canada hopes to restart service May 1. Meanwhile, it says affected customers will be notified and offered a full refund.
Air Canada says regulations and “ongoing health and safety concerns” prompted the decision.
Italy is the centre of Europe’s epidemic.
Italian authorities say the number of infections has topped 10,000. More than 600 people with the virus have died there.
In January, Canada’s largest airline halted all direct flights to China – the epicenter of the virus – as it braced for a hit to revenues. Its shares have fallen about 40% in the past seven weeks.
Air Canada was in the news last week when they announced they be temporarily waiving the change fee for flights as well.
Italy is currently in the midst of a country-wide lockdown in an effort to prevent the disease from spreading further, as they’ve seen the most deaths anywhere outside of China. The parameters of the lockdown restrict people to their homes with no public gatherings allowed.
According to the Italian government, only those with a valid work or family reason that cannot be postponed will be allowed to travel.
All events, including soccer matches, have been suspended indefinitely.
The airline has reported that everyone who has flights to the country will be offered a full refund while they hope to restart service on May 1.
With files to Canadian Press.