Hong Kong Airport Closed – Again – As Protesters Swarm

United Airlines and American Airlines finally issued limited travel waivers yesterday for Hong Kong travel, though if you want to put off trips you need to plan to rebook for travel in the coming days. If you’re a tourist unsure of the current situation U.S. airlines that fly to Hong Kong want you to know they’ll keep your money and you’re out of luck if you want to push off a trip to the Chinese special administrative region.

After the airport was closed to departing flights Monday afternoon as a result of being overrun by protesters, people dispersed and some operations commenced again Tuesday morning.

However protesters returned and the airport once again shut down to departures on Tuesday afternoon.

Air China has added capacity between nearby Shenzhen and Beijing for mainland-headed passengers to get out of Hong Kong.

Travelers are reportedly visibly frustrated, though protesters have also been seen offering water and San Miguel beer to those stranded (HT: Joe Brancatelli). Hong Kong Airlines, majority-owned by the mainland’s HNA Group, properly expressed condemnation of the protests and support for Chinese rule.

About Gary Leff

Gary Leff is one of the foremost experts in the field of miles, points, and frequent business travel - a topic he has covered since 2002. Co-founder of frequent flyer community InsideFlyer.com, emcee of the Freddie Awards, and named one of the "World's Top Travel Experts" by Conde' Nast Traveler (2010-Present) Gary has been a guest on most major news media, profiled in several top print publications, and published broadly on the topic of consumer loyalty. More About Gary »

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  1. The protestors have figured out that the airport is HKG’s Achilles heel, given its financial and tourism importance. And the police cannot “vigorously” clear it with foreigners and journalists around.

  2. I am struggling to figure out how the protestors are getting back and forth to the airport. Why don’t they shut down the train, close the highway and transport passengers by bus to the airport from some designated spot? My sympathy levels for the protestors will be very low if somehow this continues into my flight times. Given whatever HK’s status is with china, I don’t see how HK has a leg to stand on regarding whatever laws that china wants to invoke or enforce. HKG is going to suffer significant change with regard to their stature in the airline world until the flying public is once again convinced that these differences can be handled in a less disruptive manner.

  3. The protesters are getting more and more ridiculous. Which government and country will allow the protesters to disrupt the airport operations??? I have zero sympathy on those young kids / protesters in HK.

  4. “The protestors have figured out that the airport is HKG’s Achilles heel, given its financial and tourism importance. And the police cannot “vigorously” clear it with foreigners and journalists around.” – Yea and what they are going to discover is that the CCP is going to use this to bolster their case for sending in the PAP. If the protesters are smart they will figure out somewhere else to protest, because screwing over international travelers is not going to advance their cause. Yes it gains attention that they need, but it also alienates people who may otherwise be sympathetic to them.

  5. @mark johnson If you’d agree to be a student of history, note the HK protestors aren’t too dissimilar from our Revolutionary war.

    Think in a larger context, not just your flight times.

  6. I agree that protesters are targeting the wrong audience. Most international flight passengers, especially those coming in or flying by, don’t have much alternatives in terms of missing a flight or connection flight.

    Anyways, @colleen there will be no revolution that you’re talking about. In order to have revolution, there needs to be wide spread support and there isn’t much, especially on mainland where it county. It’s just a matter of time before China really put the squeeze into the current freedoms that they so enjoy. It was already agreed and documented by UK and China at the turnover of HK what will happen…just a matter of time.

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