UPDATE: Monday July 18 11:30 PDT: BREAKING: New official FAA Statement:
“The FAA lifted all restrictions on flights to and from Turkey at 1:45 p.m. EDT, July 18, 2016.” Flights to US are expected to resume on Tuesday, July 19. Read updated post on TravelSkills here.
This alert from Turkish Airlines popped into our email box Saturday morning…at about the same time we started hearing that the FAA had banned flights from Turkey from flying into the US….
Turkish Airlines is the only carrier with nonstops between the U.S. and Turkey. Friday, Turkish Airlines Flight 80 departed SFO at 6:10 pm in the midst of the crisis, and has apparently landed safely according to FlightAware.
Currently, all flights to/from the US show as canceled on the Turkish Airlines website flight cancellation page.
The US Embassy in Turkey has stated that the FAA has banned flights from Turkey to the US, so the situation remains fluid. The US State Department tweets that it has “no updates on when flights to the US will resume.”
You can watch flight traffic over Istanbul here which shows flights from IST to other countries has resumed. This means that Americans should be able to get out of the country, then change planes at a European airport to get back to the U.S. For its part, Lufthansa/SWISS says that it will not alter schedules to Turkey, which provides a way for US citizens (and Star Alliance partners) a way to get in and out of the country.
Update 7 am PDT SUNDAY: Although we have not yet received any subsequent official statements from Turkish Airlines, this is the latest from the US State Department: Expect further disruptions in commercial and public transportation, and check with your transportation provider (e.g., airline, train operator, etc.). Per the Federal Aviation Administration’s notice to airmen (NOTAM), U.S. airline carriers are prohibited from flying to or from Istanbul and Ankara airports. All airline carriers, regardless of country of registry, are prohibited from flying into the United States from Turkey either directly or via a third country. Further, although some airlines resumed service, travelers should be prepared for changes to flight schedules and paths. Please contact your airline for the latest flight information and to confirm your travel plans.
UPDATE: Sunday 6 pm PDT. Turkish Air finally addresses US cancellations in a tweet:
— Turkish Airlines (@TurkishAirlines) July 17, 2016
Istanbul, 16th July 2016
Announcement from Turkish Airlines to our Valued Passengers and Dear Nation,
With the unflinching will of the people, Turkey has awakened to a new day with a much stronger sense of democracy and freedom.
Upon the call of our President H.E. Recep Tayyip Erdoğan our operations at İstanbul Atatürk Airport are now back to normal and flights have begun.
As of the 16th of July by 14:30 (EEST) all our flight operations will resume as planned. Grateful to our Dear Nation, we extend our thanks to our passengers for their understanding for the inconvenience.
Due to this situation, for individual and group reservations, provided that:
- Flights operated by Turkish Airlines ( including AnadoluJet trademark )
- Departing/arriving to Turkey (including domestic flights) and/or transit flights via Turkey
- Flights operated between 15 July 2016 – 17 July 2016 (inclusive)
- Ticketed on/before 15 July 2016
- Tickets are revalidated untıl 15 August 2016 (ınclusive)
And disregardıng of related fare rules:
1) All Rebooking/ReRouting will be made without any charge provided that new destination is same IATA region & same cabin class
2) Refund requests:
- a) Unused tickets: refund will be made without any charge; or
- b) For partially used tickets, when planned trip is not complete; the remaining flights will be refunded without any charge.
3) Extension of ticket validity:
Validity of ticket can be extended until 15 August 2016 (inclusive) without any fare difference or penalty.
Turkish Airlines Inc. (Website here)
Don’t miss this one from! Trip Report: Turkish Airlines business class SFO-IST (June 2016)
— Turkish Airlines (@TurkishAirlines) July 16, 2016
NOTE: Be sure to click here to see all recent TravelSkills posts about: How to get the BEST summer fare deals | One airline fee fading fast | Trip Report: Aer Lingus Economy Class | 5 top jobs for frequent travelers | First class phase out coming soon