Temperature screening and face masks will become common sights at airports to mitigate the spread of the new coronavirus but physical distancing could make flying more expensive, the head of Dubai airport said.
Around the world, governments, airports, and airlines are considering temporary safety measures to restart air travel, including mandatory temperature checks, wearing face masks, and keeping passengers apart.
“We are going to have to take whatever measures are necessary to protect the traveling public and our staff,” Chief Executive Paul Griffiths told Reuters.
Passengers wait before boarding at Dubai International Airport, as Emirates airline resumed limited outbound passenger flights amid the outbreak of the coronavirus disease (COVID-19) in Dubai. (Reuters)
Dubai International, one of the world’s busiest airports, suspended passenger services in late March as the United Arab Emirates took drastic measures to contain the virus.
The UAE has since allowed some repatriation flights and eased other restrictions in the Gulf state, though it is not clear when normal flights will restart.
Temporary safety measures should be expected as flights resume but Griffiths cautioned physical distancing rules would eventually limit growth as demand rebounds.
Fit to travel
It is unclear when global travel will recover from the coronavirus pandemic which has shattered demand and will partially depend on countries lifting their lockdowns.