As the coronavirus curve starts to flatten in many areas, people are starting to think more and more about making travel plans. If you are thinking about traveling by airplane after the coronavirus pandemic is over, you can expect things to be different. Airplane travel isn’t going to be back to normal for a long time. In fact, the changes that may be implemented could become your new normal when traveling.
Before the coronavirus pandemic, airplane travel was a bit hectic. Everyone was boarding the plane in tight lines and squeezing themselves through the aisle on the airplane. People were back to back putting their belongings in the overhead storage compartments. When the coronavirus pandemic is over, things will be different. When boarding the plane, the passengers will need to keep a distance from one another. The passengers who are seated in the back of the plane will need to board first.
Even at the airports, social distancing is expected to continue for quite some time. Airport staffs have already placed down markers on the floor so that people are reminded to stay 6-feet away from one another.
Limited Flight Capacity
In addition to making sure that everyone is keeping their distance on flights, some airlines are stating that they will only allow seat capacity to be 60%. This way the airplane seats are not full. People will be able to better keep their distance from one another when they aren’t on a packed plane.
Having a Health Certificate
Another thing that you can expect when traveling after the pandemic by plane is that you will need to have a health certificate. This is a digital certificate that states that you have been cleared by a doctor. They are stating that you are in good enough health to travel and be around other people. You may need to show the airport staff that you have a health certificate before you are allowed to board the plane.
Increased Boarding Pass Rates
Airlines have always made a lot of money on boarding passes. Many people think they already charge a lot for boarding passes. In fact, sometimes passengers are charged more when there are expected to be empty seats. Now that it is looking like airlines will only book flights to 60% capacity, the boarding pass rates can be expected to rise to compensate for the money the airlines will be losing due to the increased number of empty seats.
Fewer Amenities Available
To reduce the interaction between the flight attendants and the passengers, you will probably be seeing fewer amenities offered while on the airplane. For instance, for a while after the coronavirus pandemic, the airlines may not offer food and drink (unless there are longer flights). This will prevent the flight attendants and the passengers from having to come into contact with each other more than is already necessary.
No Extra Guests
If you have flown on an airplane before and either been seen off or met at your arrival gate by a loved one or friend, you can expect this to change after the coronavirus pandemic (at least for a while). The airlines are probably going to avoid having any extra guests at the airport. The fewer people that are in the airport, the less chances there will be of another coronavirus outbreak.
Wearing Masks and Having Sanitizing Stations
You can also expect to be required to wear a mask on the flights for at least the months following the pandemic. It may even last longer than that. The airlines may install sanitizing stations on the flights, as well. By following these protocols, the airline staff can help to ensure everyone’s safety on the plane. They will, of course, be cleaning the plane before and after each flight, too.
Length of Time Spent in the Airport
Before the coronavirus pandemic, you have probably spent hours in the airport - making sure you can get through security, being sure to get something to eat at the airport before your flight, and making sure you have plenty of time to board your plane. In the future, after the pandemic, you may not be allowed to just hang out around the airport. There may be strict times that each passenger is allowed to be at the airport. This will reduce the amount of foot traffic in the airport at any given time.
With this being said, you may have a lengthier process to check-in for a while. As the guidelines change for how to check-in (this will probably include more digital methods), people are going to need to get used to following these methods. It may take them a bit longer to do so.
This is what your future of post-pandemic airline travel might look like. It could potentially be the new normal for a long time.
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