With COVID-19 cases in India rapidly rising, no one should be fooled by the gradual relaxation of lockdown. The decision to reopen domestic airlines and resuming transportation services is out of the compulsion of the dying economy. Whether you’re staying at home or traveling for work or any personal obligation, safety and hygiene must be of utmost importance, and some points to carefully consider while traveling by air are listed below.

Preparation for the journey-
Things to carry-
Make sure you carry a couple of extra pairs of gloves and masks along with sanitizer, paper soap, toilet seat sanitizer, and wipes. The sanitizer preferably should be 60% alcohol-based.
Luggage- Due to the airlines sanitizing the luggage, it’s safer to carry plastic-covered suitcases so that the essentials are not spoilt by the sanitization process. Especially the check-in luggage must have a plastic covering.

Health insurance- Renew the health insurance and keep a couple of copies with you for the worst-case scenario.
Check-in feature- Use the web check-in feature from before to ensure no hassle at the airport and to avoid physical touch or interaction.

On the way to Airport-
Preferably, avoid using rental cars or public mode of transportation. If possible ask for a family or friend’s help or use your own vehicle.

Nevertheless, if you have to use a rental car, make sure you have correct information about the hygiene maintained by the rental service. COVID Even after assurance, it’s better to be extra careful and sanitize the doorknob and seat with a tissue before using either of them.

At the Airport-
While checking in, don’t walk barefoot on the metal detector, wear your shoes. Try to avoid the bin where people put their personal belongings like a belt, watch for checking because that bin has a high risk of containing the virus.
After the check-in, it’s time for the first cleanup session. Change the mask and gloves carefully while avoiding touching the outer surface of gloves and masks. Wash your hands, sanitize your phone case, carry-on luggage, sunglass, or watch (don’t wear one, preferably) and put on a new pair of masks and gloves.

Avoid eating or buying anything at the airport and even if you do, use a cashless method of payment.
On being called for boarding the flight avoid the immediate rush and wait till the crowd has thinned. Remember the rule is 6 feet distance.

In the Flight-
Once COVID inside the flight, make sure to wipe the seat, seat belt, the tiny table, window glass, and calling button with sanitizer. These are the most touch areas and must be disinfected thoroughly. All airlines have upped their hygiene and cleanliness game but being cautious is smart
Accessories- The gloves, mask, and face shield as provided by the airlines are new accessories of “travel look” and people must adhere to the rules of the airlines.

Snacking- Avoid eating or drinking water that is provided by the airline to avoid opening the mask. Although it’s completely safe, prevention is better than cure. Avoid
talking to fellow passengers or shaking hands.

After Flight Lands-
Cleanup- Time for a second cleanup session. Follow the same procedure as the first and make sure to discard the used gloves and mask carefully so as to not cause any spreading of the virus.

Luggage- After collecting the luggage from the conveyer belt, disinfect them to clean up the mess created by dozens of hands handling your luggage.

Journey to the destination-
Ride- COVID At this end too, it’s preferable to have someone pick you up in their private vehicle. If that’s not possible, again follow the same rules for public vehicles or rental cars as mentioned before.

After reaching the destination-
Wash the clothes with soap and soak it in some disinfectant before sun-drying them.
Luggage- Use sanitizer, or soap generously to clean the handle and the surface of the luggage.
Gloves and Masks- Carefully dispose of the used items so as to avoid the spread of germs.

Self-quarantine- The most patience worthy part of the entire process is the 14 days self-quarantine that follows. Be careful and responsible citizens and don’t ignore this very important step.

This battle of humans against viruses is a long one indeed and needs the responsible participation of every single individual so as to ensure victory. Your health is others’ health.

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