UK airlines cancel flights to Tokyo
UK airlines cancelled flights to Tokyo today following the devastating Japanese earthquake.
A British Airways plane heading for Tokyo's Hareda airport had pushed back off the stand at Heathrow today when the airline decided it would not be leaving.
BA also cancelled its daily Heathrow service to Tokyo's Narita airport.
But London-bound BA flights from Hareda and Narita were due to land safely back in the UK later today having left before the earthquake struck.
Virgin Atlantic, which operates daily services to Narita from Heathrow, also cancelled its Tokyo flight today.
A Virgin spokeswoman said: "Narita is about one hour from central Tokyo and we've cancelled our flight VS900 and the return flight VS901 today.
"We do have a flight from Tokyo that left before the earthquake and that will arrive back this evening."
A BA spokesman said: "We decided that we would not operate the Haneda-bound flight (BA007) as a precaution and have also cancelled our flight to Narita."
There are fears that the tsunami could reach as far as Australia, Mexico and Hawaii. Both BA and Virgin said they were closely monitoring the situation.
Virgin Atlantic said its daily London-Tokyo service would not operate tomorrow or on Sunday and that a decision on when its flights to Japan would resume would be made over the weekend.
British Airways was scheduled to operate one flight to Narita and one to Haneda tomorrow. A decision on whether those services would operate was expected later today.
Long-haul holiday company Kuoni said all its UK tourists in Hawaii were safe and well and had been contacted by staff.
A Kuoni spokeswoman went on: "Our people in Hawaii are in Honolulu and they will be moved to higher ground should there be any tsunami danger.
"We have holidaymakers in a number of Pacific areas including Malaysia and Hong Kong and also in Australia. We are aware of the tsunami warnings and are prepared."
She added that Kuoni also had clients in California in an area (western USA) where a lesser tsunami warning has been issued.
The Page & Moy Travel Group said it had a cruise tour operating in the Japan area but holidaymakers had not been affected.
The group, whose holiday companies consist of Travelsphere, Page and Moy and Just You, said alternative arrangements were being made for its clients on existing Far East tours which had been due to visit Japan in the next few days.
Page & Moy went on: "No additional tours are due to leave the UK to Japan until March 27. At the present time these tours are still scheduled to go ahead.
"The US islands of Hawaii and other nations across the Pacific Ocean are also on alert after a tsunami warning was extended across the region.
"At present all tours are going ahead as planned. The situation is being assessed on an ongoing basis. The safety of our customers is our number one priority."
The Independent travel offers: Discover a world of inspiring destinations
- 2 Exclusive: Abusers using spyware apps to monitor partners reaches 'epidemic proportions'
- 3 Andy Murray takes to Twitter to show off his Christmas jumper
- 4 Margaret Thatcher 'expressed fears of Asian rising' at Anglo-Irish summit in 1984
Travel: Don't even think about buying a yacht
TripAdvisor reveals the top places to visit in 2015
Yakutsk: Journey to the coldest city on earth
Top 10 travel destinations for 2015: From Haiti and Alaska to Namibia and Iceland
Simon Calder: Why the biggest plane in the world isn't right for the busiest route
British actor Idris Elba cannot star as James Bond because he is black, says shock jock Rush Limbaugh
Rozanne Duncan: Ukip expels councillor for 'jaw-dropping' comments made in BBC TV interview
Germany anti-Islam protests: 17,000 march on Dresden against 'Islamification of the West'
Ukip member gets into Christmas spirit with Union Flag plea to Santa 'for our country back'
BBC director Danny Cohen: Rising UK antisemitism makes me feel more uncomfortable than ever
Katie Hopkins speaks out on childhood obesity: 'Parents of fat children should be prosecuted for child cruelty'
£25000 - £30000 per annum: Recruitment Genius: The fastest growing fitness cha...
£240 - £275 per day: Investigo: Support the global business through in-depth a...
Negotiable: Ashdown Group: Data Manager - MySQL, Shell Scripts, Java, VB Scrip...
£27000 - £32000 per annum: Ashdown Group: Application Support Analyst - near S...