As the Coronavirus pandemic continues to dwindle across the world, more countries are beginning to open up. Life is slowly but surely going back to normal. Some airports have opened up and now flying out for work, school or vacation is no longer out of the question. But even though flying across the world is slowly taking shape, you might have some reservations about catching a plane to your destination. Not to worry. I did some research and here are some things you should expect when flying during the Coronavirus pandemic across the world:
There are fewer flights
Many airlines have grounded a significant number of their aircraft because of the decrease in demand for flights. But with fewer planes active, those that are taking passengers are filling up quickly. Booking a flight today may feel like you’re booking during a busy season, as you may find your desired flights are already all reserved.
Know quarantine and testing mandates
If you are flying during the Coronavirus pandemic, it’s important to know that some destinations are requiring visitors to quarantine for 14 days upon their arrival. Hawaii is one of them. Alaska requires visitors to have a recent negative Coronavirus test. Those who don’t get tested before arrival will be tested at the airport upon arrival and quarantined while waiting for their results.
They’re trying to stay below capacity
Most airlines are trying to fill planes far below capacity. An airline may notify you if the plane fills up beyond the safe capacity, giving you the option to change flights, free of charge, should you feel more safe doing so.
Bring your own drinks and snacks
Flying during the Coronavirus pandemic may be a bit different than the usual when it comes to in-flight service. Some airlines suspended it entirely for several months. Some are only offering water. Others are offering prepackaged snacks. It’s common to find that, whatever the flight is offering runs out fairly quickly. It’s a good idea to bring your own drinks and food, particularly for long flights, as the airline may not be providing those.
A new boarding process
If you rely on a special points program or elite credit card to get you boarded on the plane first, you may find that’s not the case right now. Many airlines have taken to boarding the plane, back to front, to minimize the number of times passengers come in contact with one another. Be sure to arrive at your gate early so you can participate in the boarding safety measures.
Lounges may be closed or limited
You may not be able to escape the crowds into your VIP lounges, complete with calming music, massaging recliners, and fresh food buffets. Many VIP lounges are currently closed. Those that are open may be offering limited snacks that are prepackaged, instead of the lavish buffets you may expect.
Airports are quiet
Air travel numbers are in the hundreds of thousands versus the multiple millions they were at last year. So, you may find the airport a creepily quiet place. Check-in service, however, may be slow, because, in response to the drop in air travel, some airlines aren’t employing as many check-in agents.