Delta Allowing Travelers to Cancel Flights to the Dominican Republic Free of Charge

The country has seen a flurry of tourist deaths, disappearances and illness in recent months

Delta flights
Anyone flying Delta to the Dominican Republic can now cancel their flight without penalty. (Getty Images)
By Ariel Scotti / June 26, 2019 10:25 am

If you’ve booked a flight on Delta to the Dominican Republic but are having second thoughts in light of a recent wave of unexplained deaths on the island, fear not. The airline is now allowing cancellations without fees for those flying into Punta Cana, the island’s most popular hub.

Anyone looking to take advantage of this rare opportunity must do so by August 15, CNN reported. Rebooked flights have to be made for travel before November 20, while those who choose to skip their plans altogether will receive a travel credit from Delta which, unsurprisingly, must be used within a year of the now-canceled trip.

Passengers headed to the Dominican Republic’s two other airports, Santo Domingo and Santiago de los Caballeros, will have to deal with Delta individually, according to CNN. Other major airlines like American and JetBlue have also said that they’re willing to work with frightened customers looking to change their travel plans.

It appears that many travelers have opted to jump ship on their Dominican plans. Between June 1 and June 19, cancellations to the island spiked 51 percent when compared to the same time period last year, CNN reported. New bookings from the U.S. to the island for the months of July and August have fallen by a staggering 74 percent.

The U.S. State Department has reported that at least 10 Americans have died in the past year in the Dominican Republic, but Dominican Tourism Minister Francisco Javier Garcia has denied this figure, calling the claim “exaggerated.”

“It’s not true that there has been an avalanche of American tourists dying in our country, and it’s not true that we have mysterious deaths,” he said, according to CNN.

He did not comment on the reported 47 Jimmy Buffett fans who fell violently ill while on a group tour to the island in April, many of who did not feel “normal” again for two months.

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