airplane with facemasks


Re-opening the travel industry after COVID-19 global lockdown

14 August 2020

Before the sector can return to serving a global audience a number of precautions will need to be established and communicated throughout the world in order to restore confidence in air travel safety.

Some of the changes you may see to the air travel industry;

1. A reduction in the need for human interaction by implementing:

  • online booking, check in & self-service bag tagging
  • boarding pass on mobile phone
  • paying for purchases via wallet on smartphones or contactless credit cards

2. Body temperature scanners on entry

3. Mouth and nose coverings in all public areas will be compulsory & disinfection dispensers will be available throughout the airport

4. An enhanced cleaning and disinfection routine

5. Security check points can cause bottlenecks, possible solutions include:

  • Screening officers positioned in remote locations
  • Use of EDS CB C3 approved CT technology which allows for liquids and laptops to be left in bags, reducing the number of trays handled by both staff and passengers
  • X-ray equipment may also be upgraded to EDS CB C2, removing the need to unpack laptops
  1. 6. Short-wavelength UV light (UVC) may be installed for the disinfection of surfaces at security checkpoints

  2. 7.
    Artificial intelligence could be harnessed which would enable automated screening at the checkpoint. This would create a "self-service" security checkpoint where human interaction is only required if an alert is triggered
  1. Some countries will require fit to fly certs and negative Covid-19 tests no older than 72 hours in order to allow boarding
  2. Disposable protective gear provided for all crew and maintenance personnel (e.g. masks, aprons, goggles and gloves)
  3. Body temperature scan before boarding the aircraft
1. The air circulation and purification in modern aircraft circulates vertically and is exchanged up to 30 times per hour via so called HEPA filters, which boast operating room quality by filtering 99.9% of all virus and bacteria.

2. Cleaning and disinfection of toilets and high touch areas every 2 hours

3. Meal service is likely to be reduced or removed from most flights

4. The last 3 rows may be left empty in case they are required during the flight for the quarantining of a passenger

5. All passengers will wear nose and mouth coverings during the duration of the flight

6. A clear protocol will be required for handling of in-flight medical emergency events

1. Clear protocols for crew quarantine after high risk flights and/or a Covid-19 positive passenger detected on a flight

2. Clear protocol for contacting fellow passengers in case of a Covid-19 positive passenger detected on a flight

3. Routine cleaning and non-corrosive disinfection of the plane's passenger facing areas after each flight

Ensure you have access to the medical treatment you may need with international health insurance or travel insurance covering pandemics and repatriation. If you have questions on your health and wellbeing while overseas, get in touch, we are happy to advise you on your options.