Planning for Air Travel? Brace for Plethora of New Rules Before and After Boarding Flight

Singapore Airlines and Scoot have put in new safety measures as the city-state set to resume international travel

As Singapore prepares to resume flight operations from June 8, the country's airlines have put in new safety measures in place in view of the ongoing Coronavirus pandemic.

The city-state's national carrier, Singapore Airlines (SIA), in a statement, said that all passengers will be given a personal protection equipment (PPE) kit that includes a surgical mask, hand sanitizer and anti-bacterial wipes.

At the Changi airport, wearing a mask for all passengers above 2 years age and cabin crew has been made mandatory since May. Compulsory temperature checks are already in place to ensure safety. That aside, health declaration has been made mandatory prior to check-in for incoming and outgoing passengers.

SIA has also said that enhanced cleaning process has also been implemented for aircraft and lounges. The airline is also looking at a trial run for cleaning aircraft with ultra-violet light before every flight besides adjusting their cabin air refreshment settings to minimize the risk of bacteria and virus in the air molecule. Apart from that, as per new regulations, in-flight meal services have been replaced with snack packs for travelers in South East Asia and China.

Passengers line-up at automated immigration control gates at Changi airport's Terminal 4 in Singapore April 30, 2018. Picture taken April 30, 2018. REUTERS/Thomas White
Automated immigration at Changi Airport REUTERS/Thomas White

"Every aircraft in the Singapore Airlines Group fleet is equipped with HEPA filters which remove more than 99.9% of the microbes in the air. Cabin air is also refreshed every 2-3 minutes throughout the flight," a press release issued by SIA read.

Enhancing contactless approach

By next month, an already established contactless approach will be enhanced. Through its mobile app, SingaporeAir allows passengers to have access to in-flight menu and e-library, beside the in-flight entertainment system. This is done to keep contact to a minimum.

"This is an opportunity for us to be innovative and to think creatively about how, despite the constraints, we can continue to deliver good service and also good quality meals for our customers," Goh Choon Phong, Chief Executive Officer of Singapore Airlines said in a media interview.

No seat selection on Scoot

The budget airline of Singapore, Scoot has also implemented a plethora of new approaches. For now, online and in-flight seat upgrades have been suspended while extra cabin baggage and inflight duty-free shopping have also been put on hold to minimize contact. Passengers will now be assigned seats when they check in.

A Scoot Boeing 787-9 Dreamliner is displayed at the Singapore Airshow at Changi Exhibition Center February 16, 2016.
REUTERS/Edgar Su/Files

Apart from that, Scoot has already put restrictions on cabin baggage. Earlier, up to 10kg of cabin baggage was allowed. But now, it has been reduced to only one carry-in bag of up to 3kg which can fit under the seat. The remaining cabin baggage will have to be checked in.

"Where possible, Scoot will endeavor to provide seats to customers travelling with family, or customers in the same booking, together. But customers should not change seats in-flight," the airline said in a statement.

Scoot has also made health declaration mandatory. Passengers will have to complete the declaration form before check-in. It can be completed at check-in kiosks or online.

Related topics : Coronavirus