JACKSONVILLE, Fla. – The number of people traveling on airlines amid the coronavirus pandemic is scraping along at levels not seen in decades, and the Associated Press reports there are only about 17 passengers on the average domestic flight.
But as the country starts to reopen, airlines are hopeful passengers will come back.
While there is no blanket guideline for the airlines, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention has been asked to step in, but the agency will only offer recommendations -- not mandates.
One recommendation: All passengers and airline crew wear a mask -- something you may have to bring to the airport with you.
But keeping up with what airlines are doing what when it comes to the safety of passengers and crew members can be almost as overwhelming as booking a flight.
Southwest Airlines has released videos that show how fresh air is circulated during a flight.
Delta Air Lines has implemented a fogging system that cleans planes each night -- on top of the deep cleaning between flights.
As for masks, airline rules continue to change, but here’s what we know right now:
- Delta, JetBlue and United Airlines are already requiring passengers to wear masks.
- Frontier Airlines will start this requirement on Friday, May 9
- American Airlines and Southwest will require masks starting Monday, May 11.
Florida Gov. Ron DeSantis believes airlines will need to step up and do more moving forward.
“I think it’s gotta be the airlines (that) really need to be testing people prior to them getting on these planes if they’re in, from areas where there are outbreaks," DeSantis said.
And it’s important to point out that many of these protocols are changing day by day. And while some airlines are providing masks for passengers, others are not, so you need to check with the airline to find out. Airlines are posting COVID-19 updates on their webpages.