This afternoon IATA held a virtual press conference to provide details on the program they have developed to ensure the flight experience as soon as borders can be opened at most airports.
The airlines have worked out a plan with measures that already exist and at different levels, which the organization considers to be feasible on a temporary basis.
In order to avoid contact between people as much as possible –be it between passengers or airline and airport workers–, efforts will be made to generalize processes such as web check-in, in addition to encouraging users to make their own documentation through self-service bag drop systems, as well as limiting access to airports.
Access to the terminals must be restricted, and this means only allowing airport workers and passengers with their boarding pass in hand, as well as the companions of minors and people with disabilities.
Part of the requirements also includes the use of mouthguards both to access the airport and throughout the flight, a measure that IATA has also promoted with the aim of avoiding other measures such as leaving empty seats between passengers, which would increase the operating costs of airlines and, consequently, airline tickets, up to 54%.
Passengers must arrive with their own mouth masks in most cases, although it will depend on the specificities that are worked with each government, added the Association.
During the flight, airlines will seek to maintain a physical distance, so that hand luggage on board could be limited to avoid contact between passengers while it is being stored, and it will also seek to reduce the movement of users in the cabin.
For the baggage claim, work will be done to maintain distance standards and governments will be encouraged to digitize immigration processes to avoid contact between people, all this only when necessary, so they would not be permanent measures, Restrepo Marino said.
Among the many questions that the official answered, he clarified that they are having “very productive” communication with those responsible for Transportation and ANAC in Argentina to try to modify the restart date of commercial flights and also potential aid packages to the industry.