Following my first post COVID-19 flight experience, I am pleased to share with you the new measures implemented as well as the atmosphere present throughout the stages before, during and after the flight.
My flight from Quebec City Jean Lesage Airport took place on Monday, June 8, 2020 on Air Canada. My first flight was very early in the morning. I arrived earlier than usual at the airport as I was not sure what to expect from the new procedures in place. I immediately felt the reassuring and amicable tone of Air Canada's flight attendants as soon as I stopped at the check-in counter. I had previously checked in online, but since I had a question about my carry-on, I went ahead and checked in anyway. That's when my concerns and my anxiety level about this new reality dropped considerably.
The airport security screening went smoothly in a more relaxed and friendly atmosphere than before. I quickly noticed that all staff members were wearing masks and gloves. The only noticeable difference from the usual procedure is in the verification and validation of the boarding pass. In the past, an agent used to scan it. We now have to scan our own document. Don’t worry, it's very simple!
Time to head towards the boarding gate for my flight from Quebec City to Montreal. Once again, I quickly notice that all the passengers are wearing masks and are waiting patiently and following the social distancing rules. I would have liked to have access to a stand or a restaurant in order to buy a coffee. Unfortunately, nothing was open in that section.
Once onboard, I am on a plane designed with two rows of two seats and only the window seats are occupied. After take-off, the flight attendants give us a small care kit containing: a paper mask, disposable gloves, a small bottle of hand sanitizer, two individually wrapped hand sanitizer wipes and a 250 ml water bottle. The atmosphere on the flight is intended to be reassuring and relaxed while being organized to make sure sanitary measures are respected. For example, one person was kindly asked to adjust his mask because it did not cover his nose properly. Please note: bring your own mask for more comfort during your trip.
My second flight is from Montreal to Edmonton. The aircraft offers two rows, three seats per row but the middle seat is blocked. The atmosphere remains the same as on the previous flight, i.e. reassuring and relaxed. Once again, we received the same CleanCare+ kit as on the previous flight. Onboard service is not offered so I highly recommend bringing extra drinks and snacks.
In my opinion, the most significant difference compared to the way things were done before the pandemic is the reduced interactions between passengers and between passengers and flight attendants.
In conclusion, I consider that this first post COVID-19 flight has reassured me in my desire to travel and, above all, has given me hope that despite this new reality, I will continue to travel.
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