With the Holiday Season now upon us, normal traveling anxiety has taken a new form this year. Those traveling, as well as their families and friends, have understandable concerns about the possible dangers of traveling during a pandemic.
From the very start of the World Health Organization’s declaration of the Coronavirus pandemic, airlines and hotels have taken significant precautions to prevent the spread of Covid-19 with new cleanliness standards between flights becoming the top priority for all airlines. Aircrafts are now routinely sanitized between flights using industrial electrostatic sprayers with surgical face masks and gloves a part of every crewmember’s uniform. Airports sanitize gates, jetways and passenger areas. The entire travel industry uses every effort to minimize potential exposures to the virus for everyone.
Additionally, the air inside the aircraft during flights and in between flights has never been cleaner. Recently, the COO and President of JetBlue, Joanna Geraghty, shared a video on the company’s website highlighting the latest research on air filtration within their aircraft cabins. HEPA filters — the same filters used in hospital operating rooms — are able to capture 99.9% of all the particles within the air. Cabin air is also refreshed every three minutes with new air ducted from outside the aircraft during flight.
The chances of contracting COVID on an aircraft, especially as a passenger wearing a mask, is actually very low. According to a CNN article, the risk of contracting the virus on a full flight is only 1 in 4,300. If the middle seat is empty, that ratio becomes 1 in 7,700.
Hotels have also implemented significant enhancements to their cleaning procedures and disinfection regimens. Hilton, IHG, and Marriott are just a few of the many hotels that have developed new protocols for disinfection. Contactless check-in/check-out, electrostatic sprayers, and limiting guests in certain facilities are some of the many ways hotels are working to reduce the potential of guests and staff contracting Coronavirus.
At API, we understand the new fears and anxieties when it comes to traveling. We are in continual close contact with our airline partners and hotel partners to ensure the safety of crew members. Certainly, the travel industry is facing new challenges, but helping to keep crew members safe during layovers will continue to be our top priority at API.
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