Back to flying...What is it like?
I recently had the opportunity to return to the friendly skies on board a Delta flight. This was the first time I was able to fly since before the start of the COVID-19 Pandemic and I was glad to have the opportunity to experience what has changed in air travel to be able to bring that experience first hand to my clients before they set off on their first flights since before the pandemic.
From the moment I entered the parking garage at the McNamara terminal it was obvious that things were different from the last time I flew back in January. What is normally a pretty full parking garage, was virtually empty. This was when the reality of travel operating at a limited capacity sunk in. I parked and entered the airport to go through security. The security lines were very short and I was able to make it through within just a few quick minutes. Masks are required the moment you enter the airport and everyone was complying. I found signage everywhere reminding passengers to physically distance themselves from others and seats at each gate had been blocked off to promote distancing in the gate area. There were also hand sanitizer stations frequently accessible throughout the airport.
Once it came time for boarding, another change from the normal was realized. While they still allow those in First Class, Skymile Medallion members, and active Military personnel to board first if they choose, Delta is now boarding the aircraft from back to front. In the past, once those with priority boarding were on board they would then board the flight from front to back, however that has now changed.
Once onboard the plane, they had a flight attendant handing out individually wrapped sanitizing wipes for passengers to be able to sanitize their seat and area within their row. Delta is also blocking off the middle seats in Comfort+ and Economy until at least January 6, 2021. In the first-class cabin, they are blocking every other seat. Delta is also requiring masks to be worn at all times while onboard except for when actively eating or drinking and this is strictly enforced, I’m sure you have all read the stories of flights being delayed and passengers kicked off the plane for refusal to wear a mask, they are serious about this. You will also notice a change in the way beverage and snack service is being handled. Rather than going down the aisle giving options of water or soft drinks poured into a glass and snack options they are now handing out a prepackaged bag containing hand sanitizer, a bottle of water, and a few snacks.
Once the flight was over and it was time to deplane they are now asking everyone to remain in their seats until the row in front of them has started walking off of the plane, I would say the majority of passengers respected this request.
While travel is changing and we can expect to continue to see changes as the industry makes a return, it is nice to see that protocols are being put into place to make the experience of travel safe and seamless for everyone. When you are ready to travel again I would be happy to help you make it the best experience possible. Contact me at firstname.lastname@example.org or 248-518-0713.