Taiwan offers fake flights for travel-starved tourists

Source: WION
Place: New Delhi, Delhi, India Published: Jul 02, 2020, 11.40 PM(IST)

Taiwan fake flights Photograph:( Reuters )

Story highlights

Taipei's downtown Songshan airport on Thursday began offering travellers the chance to do just that, with some 60 people eager to get going, albeit to nowhere.

Craving the travel experience during the coronavirus lockdown? One Taiwanese airport has the solution -- a fake itinerary where you check in, go through passport control and security and even board the aircraft. You just never leave.

Taipei's downtown Songshan airport on Thursday began offering travellers the chance to do just that, with some 60 people eager to get going, albeit to nowhere.

Around 7,000 people applied to take part, the winners chosen by random. More fake flight experiences will take place in coming weeks.

"I really want to leave the country, but because of the epidemic lots of flights can't fly," said Hsiao Chun-wei, 38, who brought her young son.

The passengers got boarding passes, and proceeded through security and immigration before boarding an Airbus A330 of Taiwan's largest carrier, China Airlines, where flight attendants chatted to them.

"I hope the epidemic ends soon so we can really fly away," said a 48-year-old woman who gave her family name as Tsai.

"I haven't been abroad for so long. Earlier, I would go abroad two to three times a year, every year. It's such a pity that this year because of the coronavirus epidemic I haven't been able to go abroad at all," another fake passenger said.

The airport is using the event to show off renovations completed while passengers have stayed away, and show people what coronavirus-prevention steps they are taking.

Songshan usually has flights to Tokyo, Seoul and several Chinese cities, and is also an important domestic hub.

Taiwan has emerged relatively unscathed from the pandemic thanks to early and effective prevention steps, but has largely closed its borders since mid-March. It has advised citizens against overseas travel unless absolutely necessary.

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