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9 Tips You Should Know Before Taking a Plane during Coronavirus Pandemic

Published: Jun. 10, 2020

Due to the COVID-19 outbreak in 2020, it becomes less safe and more difficult to take a plane as usual. The risks come with different sections of your plane journey, from getting to the airport, waiting at the airport, to sitting on the plane and getting off the plane.
Though all the air companies have been trying their best to take measures and precautions to disinfect facilities and keep passengers safe, it is still advised to avoid unnecessary flight journeys. But if you have to, here follow the 9 tips to have a safer and smoother flight trip during the coronavirus pandemic: 

Life under the Pandemic

1. Self-Monitor before Departure

Before taking a plane, check that if you have any symptoms of coronavirus as follows: cough, difficulty breathing, chills, muscle pain, headache, loss of taste or smell, and sore throat. If necessary, make a viral test to see if you are positive for COVID-19.

2. Plan Traffic on the Road, Early Arrival in the Airport

As nearly all the airports have epidemic prevention and inspection measures, it takes a longer time for passengers to check-in and board the flight so that an early arrival in the airport is very necessary. Plan your transport means and routes in advance and private vehicles are more recommended. However, if you have to take a metro or bus, then search the routes and schedules ahead of time in case of delaying.

3. Check Immigration, Exit-Entry Regulations

If you are an international traveler flying in or out of China, then pay close attention to the immigration and exit-entry laws of China or your destination country. Most countries have temporarily closed some of the borders and some ports are not allowed to go through. In some other countries, the declaration of entry in advance is needed. For example, China Customs requires an online entry declaration 24 hours before. Also, some countries may demand quarantine after arrival, such as Britain and Canada.  

4. Luggage: Some Epidemic Prevention Products are NOT Allowed on Plane

Most common epidemic prevention products are allowed to take to the place, including surgical masks, goggles, and general protective clothing. However, the mercurial thermometer can only be taken in checked luggage.

As for sanitizer, some with a high alcohol vol over 70% is not allowed to take neither in carry-on luggage nor in checked luggage; some with an alcohol vol below 70% can only be packed individually which cannot be over 500ml each one and then put in checked luggage; some containing isopropyl alcohol cannot be taken to the plane, either.


5. Select a Seat in the Front and by the Window Online

It is advised to select a seat online before departing as it can reduce the social contact time when selecting at the counter. Try to select a seat in the first rows and near the window. Because the toilet is always set in the back part, and sitting in the back or near the aisle will undoubtedly raise the difficulty of social distancing.

6. Turn on the Air Conditioner

Make sure to turn on your air conditioner on the plane and shift the wind direction downward as it can be much helpful to the air motion and get rid of the virus. In fact, the air conditioning system on the plane can complete air exchange in 2-3 minutes and filter 99.97% of virus.

7. Try Not to Eat on Board

For a safer trip, try not to eat, drink or visit the toilet on the plane if you take a short distance flight, and avoid moving on board. If you are too thirsty, remember to ask flight attendants for a bottled water as it has a narrow mouth and with good leakproofness to prevent virus.

8. Avoid Being the Last Ones to Deplane

After the plane land off, don’t crowd to deplane but also try not to be off the plane at last. Because it may increase contacts with others during the waiting period.

9. After Flying: Keep an Eye on the Follow-up News about Confirmed Cases

It is still not over when you arrive at your destination. Accept all the security checks at the airport and remember to pay attention to the epidemic prevention and control report and related news about the new confirmed cases. Make sure there is not any new confirmed patient on your flight.

  • Questions & Answers on China Tourism News
    Asked by Bright from CHINA | Jul. 05, 2020 05:40Reply
    Requirements transit through Shanghai Pudong, with overnight layover
    Situations change rapidly due to Covid-19 As of now, what are the requirements and restrictions for passing through Shanghai Pudong. I will fly from Beijing-Shanghai-USA. In mid-August, I will have an overnight layover and have booked a hotel near the airport. I cannot find any info or a source of info whether there are quarantine requirements. Thank you! Love TravelChinaGuide!
    Answers (2)
    Answered by Marine from FRANCE | Jul. 06, 2020 18:35

    Hi, as I know, tourists from some areas with high and medium risks in Beijing need to accept 14 days quarantine while some coming from low-risk areas in Beijing doesn't if has nucleic acid testing within 7 days. I'm not clear if the policy will be changed in August. Anyway, it is better for you to consult your air company.
    Answered by Bright from CHINA | Jul. 07, 2020 06:28

    Thanks for your reply! As of July 6 they've discontinued the nucleic acid test requirement and as far as I know my neighborhood has been graded low-risk! Yay! Also today they said no new confirmed cases! Looking good! My fingers are crossed til August!
    Asked by Usama from PAKISTAN | Jun. 24, 2020 04:15Reply
    Can I travel to China from Pakistan in August as student visa holder?
    Answers (1)
    Answered by Thomas from CANADA | Jun. 29, 2020 17:46

    Well, China still closes its border for most common visa holders (except for diplomatic, service, courtesy or C visas). No news updates now and it is suggested to pay close attention to the declaration of China's Immigration Administration.
    Asked by PORTNOY58 | Jun. 22, 2020 03:21Reply
    Resident Foreigner planning Trip to Dalian for short break early July
    How feasible is it for me to be able to spend a week in Dalian for a short summer break? I have been in Nanjing China continuously since mid-March and have a residence permit valid until 2021; I have a Green health code and results (negative!) of last nucleic acid test from March. Feel like a week by the sea. Any thoughts or observations welcome. Many thanks
    Answers (1)
    Answered by Jason from AUSTRALIA | Jun. 24, 2020 00:20

    Hi, it seems you have prepared all the proofs. However, a nucleic acid test in recent times is better. If nothing goes wrong, it is feasible for you to have a short trip. Good luck!
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