Need To Know: Your Post COVID-19 Airline Health & Safety Guide

Already we are seeing new and improved passenger and staff health and wellbeing procedures being put into place, ready for flying in post-COVID-19 times. But what does this look like for each airline? Karryon is here to give you the information you need, to tell your clients what they need to know for their next flight.

Already we are seeing new and improved passenger and staff health and wellbeing procedures being put into place, ready for flying in post-COVID-19 times. But what does this look like for each airline? Karryon is here to give you the information you need, to tell your clients what they need to know for their next flight.

Wouldn’t it just be great to have the same passenger and staff health and wellness rules for all airlines?

IATA believes that a “layered approach” is the way to go, advising governments to set up online portals to collect pre-flight information that can be used to assess passengers’ health status.

“There is no single measure that will reduce risk and enable a safe restart of flying,”

Alexandre de Juniac, IATA director general

So with each airline appearing to be doing their own thing health and safety guideline wise, and with regulations changing rapidly, we figured it would be handy to have one place to visit to get the lowdown from each airline.

So we’re here to try and make the whole flying post-COVID-19 experience a little clearer for you.

We will be updating this post as airlines update their wellness policies.

Etihad Airways

Etihad Airways Wellness Ambassadors
Etihad Airways Wellness Ambassadors
  • Etihad Airways has launched a comprehensive health and hygiene programme called ‘Etihad Wellness’.
  • The programme will be championed by the introduction of specially trained Wellness Ambassadors, a first in the industry, who will provide essential travel health information and care so guests can fly with greater peace of mind.
  • The programme is additional to Etihad Airways already stringent health and hygiene measures put in place in April. See below.
  • Click here to find out more about Etihad’s new airport biotechnology.

Hawaiian Airlines

  • Guests are required to wear a face mask or covering that effectively covers the mouth and nose while boarding, through the duration of the flight and while deplaning at their destination.
  • Passengers are to use their own masks.
  • Hawaiian Airlines flight attendants and airport employees wear masks while serving guests onboard aircraft.
  • Young children unable to keep a face covering on, or guests with a medical condition or disability preventing its use, will be exempt from the policy.
  • Hand sanitisers are readily available for travellers at airports statewide and on the mainland.
  • TSA is allowing passengers to bring liquid hand sanitizer up to 12 ounces in carry-on bags until further notice.
  • For the full list of new health and hygiene measures, click here

Qantas

  • Free masks provided to all passengers on each flight – while not mandatory from a safety point of view, they are recommended to be worn in the interests of everyone’s peace-of-mind.
  • Contactless check-in (via online/app) and self-serve bag drop strongly encouraged, including the use of Q Bag Tags.
  • Hand sanitising stations at departure gates.
  • Temporary changes to Qantas Lounges, including increased physical distancing, hand sanitising stations, enhanced disinfection of surfaces and adjustments to food and drink service.
  • Enhanced cleaning of aircraft with a disinfectant effective against Coronaviruses, with a focus on high contact areas – seats, seatbelts, overhead lockers, air vents, and toilets.
  • Sanitising wipes given to all passengers to wipe down seat belts, trays and armrests themselves, if preferred.
  • Simplified service and catering to minimise touchpoints for crew and passengers.

READ: Fly Well: Qantas Launches New Health & Safety Measures

REX (Regional Express Airlines)

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  • Face masks will be compulsory on all Rex flights from June 1, 2020.
  • Passengers are to use their own masks.
  • Those without masks can purchase one at check-in. (Price TBC)
  • Passengers will be denied boarding if they refuse to wear a mask except if there are exceptional reasons.

Emirates

Airline Health
  • Emirates has introduced complimentary hygiene kits to be given to every passenger upon check-in at Dubai International Airport and on flights to Dubai. These kits comprise of masks, gloves, antibacterial wipes, and hand sanitiser. The hygiene kits supplement a slew of additional measures already introduced to keep customers safe.
  • Gloves and masks are mandatory for all customers and employees at the airport.
  • Passengers transiting through Dubai International airport will have their temperatures checked via thermal scanners.
  • Protective barriers have been installed at check-in counters to provide additional safety during interactions.
  • Emirates’ cabin crew, boarding agents, and ground staff who interact directly with travellers will don personal protective equipment (PPE) including a protective disposable gown and safety visor.
  • Carry-on items allowed in the cabin are limited to laptop, handbag, briefcase or baby items. All other items have to be checked in.
  • All Emirates aircraft will go through enhanced cleaning and disinfection processes in Dubai, after each journey.

READ: Precautions: Emirates Rolls Out ‘Rapid’ COVID-19 Testing For All Passengers Departing DXB

Air New Zealand

Karry On - Air New Zealand Auckland New York
  • Additional flight screening at the airport
  • Food and beverage services will not be available until at least 25 May on flights within New Zealand to minimise contact between customers and cabin crew.
  • High touch surfaces will be cleaned regularly, with extra steps to ensure all Air New Zealand aircraft, lounges and airports are cleaned throughout the day.
  • Air New Zealand jet aircraft are fitted with hospital-grade air systems that “filter out viruses”.
  • Hand sanitiser will be available across the airport, kiosks, service desks and all our aircraft for both customers and staff to use as they wish.
  • Air New Zealand aircraft are equipped with biohazard kits.
  • Staff have gloves, hand sanitiser, and face masks to keep everyone safe.

READ: How Will Air New Zealand Keep Passengers Healthy?

Etihad Airways

etihad-bio-screen
Etihad bio-screen
  • Passengers transiting through Abi Dhabi International airport will have their temperatures checked via thermal scanners.
  • You must wear a face mask whilst you travel and wash your hands at regular intervals.
  • Amended seat maps to make sure that there’s more space between passengers.
  • All Etihad aircraft are deep-cleaned and sanitised on arrival at each destination, including toilets, tray tables, armrests, and seatbelts.
  • Catering facilities go through rigorous hygiene testing before any EY meals are prepared, delivery of food and drink service has been streamlined in line with strict COVID-19 guidelines.
  • Etihad aircraft are equipped with HEPA air filters, which capture 99% of airborne microbes. The airflow systems mean that air is refreshed onboard on average 30 times every hour.
  • Onboard staff will wear face masks and personal protective equipment at all times during the flight. 
  • Onboard magazines have been removed, to limit touchpoints inside the aircraft.

Qatar

  • Passengers must wear face coverings inflight and Qatar recommends people bring their own for fit and comfort purposes.
  • Qatar Airways staff will wear Personal Protective Equipment (PPE) suits while onboard.
  • There will be a modified service that reduces interactions between the passengers and the crew inflight.
  • Business Class meals will be served on a tray instead of a table set up, and a cutlery wrap will be offered to passengers as an alternative to individual cutlery service, in an effort to reduce contact between the crew and the passengers.
  • Large bottles of hand sanitiser will be placed in the galleys and made available for both cabin crew and passengers.

United Airlines

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  • All passengers and staff are required to wear a mask or face covering while onboard. BYO.
  • Customers will be given individually wrapped hand sanitiser wipes to as they board.
  • Staff temperature checks at the start of each shift.
  • The airline is reducing touchpoints by temporarily shutting down self-service kiosks and beginning to roll out, in select locations, touchless kiosks that allow customers to print bag tags using their own device to scan a QR code.
  • Actively promoting social distancing with enhanced signage, including a 6 ft. rule at the ticket counters which allows for minimal contact between agents and customers.
  • “Sneezeguards” deployed at key interaction points, including at check-in counters.
  • Boarding fewer customers at a time to allow for more distance during the boarding process, minimizing crowding at the gate and jet bridge.
  • Enhanced safety and well-being of team members by requiring the use of personal protective equipment
  • Pre-packaged food and beverages available only at the bar area to reduce customer touchpoints
  • United has introduced an “all in one” economy snack bag that replaces the economy beverage and complimentary snack choice service on domestic flights scheduled 2 hours and 20 minutes or more. This bag will include a wrapped sanitizer wipe, an 8.5 oz. bottled water, a Stroopwafel and a package of pretzels
  • Enhancing cabin sanitization including electrostatic spraying, which will happen before every flight starting this June.
  • Limiting advance seat selections where possible and allowing customers to take alternative flights when they expect a flight to operate over 70% capacity.

Click here for more information.

AirAsia

karryon-airasia-a330-2
  • Additional flight screening at the airport
  • All AirAsia guests will be required to bring their own mask and wear it properly before, during, and after the flight, including during check-in and bag collection.
  • Only ONE piece of cabin baggage is allowed for each guest.

READ: Air Asia Launches Covid-Chic’ Outfits To Keep Crew And Customers Safe