While airlines and airport authorities are doing everything to ensure flying is safe for you, there are a few precautions you should take when booking your flight tickets to avoid hassles later. Mentioned in this post are 5 things you should keep in mind while booking flight tickets.
Travelling during the COVID-19 pandemic can be a bit different than usual travel. While the thought of getting infected and passing the virus to your family members, is well-taken care of by the airlines and authorities, it comes with its own sets of restrictions and rules.
In these testing times, the duty of taking proper precautions falls equally on you along with the airline and airport authorities. Therefore, keep these 5 things in mind before you book your flight tickets:
1. Your Health Status: A key question that you need to ask yourself is if you are fit to travel during this period. By now, you must know the different symptoms that are unique to the coronavirus differ from person to person. You must, therefore, analyse your health status and compare it with the information about the virus available in the public database. While taking a COVID-19 PCR test is mandatory for taking international flights, it is advisable to take one even when you’re taking a domestic flight. You must also keep a check on the health status of individuals in your close vicinity. If anyone starts showing any symptoms, then you must promptly get yourself tested.
2. The City/Country you are Travelling: Look up at the virus trends of the city and country you are travelling to. Compare the daily number of coronavirus cases reported and the measures taken by the area’s authority to contain the spread of the virus. If neither of the findings is satisfactory, then you should rethink about your travel plans. However, if you cannot miss travelling, know about all the containment zones in the area, and travel to the place accordingly.
3. Your Schedule Post Arrival: The times have changed, and now unlike pre-corona times, you should not directly go to the place of an event or office directly after leaving the airport. Health specialists recommend that you should first take a thorough bath and change your clothes once you land. This must be done before you establish close contact with anyone like embracing a loved one. While you may not be infected with the virus, you could still be carrying it on your clothes and baggage. Once you take a bath and have worn fresh, clean clothes, then only you should start with your activities. So plan your schedule and book your tickets accordingly to take out ample time for refreshing before continuing with your usual plans.
4. Don’t Count on the In-flight Meals: The service of in-flight meals had been suspended during the initial months of corona havoc. While the government has now allowed the service of in-flight meals, it’s something that you must think about. Based on your in-flight time, you should weigh the pros and cons of removing your mask and consuming a meal in a packed aeroplane.
5. Taking Appropriate Measures for Flight Cancellation: Getting to know that your flight has been cancelled at the last minute is a nightmare for all. However just like the pre-corona period you should still take appropriate measures to ensure a seamless refund to your account if your flight gets cancelled. Veteran travellers often advise going through cancellation and refund policies before flight ticket booking. Most airlines have released more relaxed cancellation rules to ensure the travellers don’t suffer. And if you are a member of a miles program, make sure your miles don’t expire. Again, most programs suspended expiry of accumulated miles during the COVID. But make sure you check with your program to find out when your points are expiring.
Read the COVID Travel Advisory
The COVID-19 travel advisory is a set of mandatory guidelines that you must follow while travelling. This includes everything you need to do before entering an airport, once inside the airport, in-flight, and post deboarding the plane. The failure to comply with these guidelines can result in a heavy fine and most cases cancellation of your ticket and your removal from the airport premises. Therefore, study the latest national travel advisory along with exclusive travel advisories of the destination cities or countries you are travelling to.