The pandemic has changed the way we travel. Here’s what you can expect the next time you board a flight.
The airline industry has been hit hard by the pandemic. With most countries enforcing social distancing guidelines and limiting their international and domestic travels, these large businesses have had to rely on government funding to keep themselves running.
Now that the world has entered a different stage of the coronavirus pandemic, one where we’re starting to slowly reignite the economy and attempting to find a “new normal,” most people will also begin to fly. But the ways in which we used to conduct ourselves, whether we took Ubers to airports or printed our tickets at airport kiosks, has changed considerably.
Here are some of the factors you should account for the next time you find yourself boarding a flight:
What’s the safest way to get to the airport?
Public transportation and ride sharing apps are changing on a daily basis, adapting to the current environment. Uber and Lyft rides are now only offering single rides, prohibiting ride sharing, meaning that these trips will now be safer but more expensive. They’re also asking everyone, from customers to workers, to wear masks and sanitize their space as soon as they board it.
Undoubtedly, the safest way to get to the airport would be to have someone you trust drive you there.
What do airports look like now?
You should expect airports to look different, much like your convenience store or any shop that has adopted social distancing measures. There should be clear social distancing marks on the floor and employees should be wearing masks and gloves. In order to prevent touch screen contamination, it’s best to keep your ticket on your phone or to print it from home, although this won’t prevent TSA agents from handling them.
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TSA agents have been instructed to avoid touching people’s smartphones, asking travelers to have their phones scanned by agents instead.
What security & health measures have airlines adopted?
While airports and airlines are all handling the pandemic in different ways, there’s definitely been an increase in cleanliness. If you’re in a large airport, you should expect to see different hand sanitizing stations and different signs encouraging people to wear masks. Some airlines are requiring people to wear masks in order to board planes. Despite the news of packed flights, most flights are not as full and are ensuring that their air filters are kept in top shape.
Still, the thing that protects people the most are the measures that travelers take themselves in order to stay safe. When entering an airport or a plane, make sure you limit your interactions with other people, that you wear a mask and use hand sanitizer and wipes when touching surfaces. It’s also pivotal to respect people’s spaces.
Airports and airplanes are usually places where people want to cut lines and get up close to others in order to get out of there as fast as possible. With current social distancing guidelines, which will continue for more months, you can expect your time at the airport to be longer and more taxing. The best thing you can do for yourself and for everyone else is to be considerate, diligent and patient.