By EMMIE V. ABADILLA
Philippine Airlines (PAL) has unveiled new flight protocols to be followed once the government lifts its lockdown on transport next week and commercial flights resume.
The flag carrier now requires people booking for flights to undergo thermal scans before entering their ticket offices. The rule is, no mask, no entry for all visitors.
PAL will also implement managed social distancing inside its ticket offices. Airline staff shall be required to wear face masks and have transparent barriers at the counter to curb contagion.
PAL passengers will have to check – in online and be at the airport early, 4 hours before international departures and 3 hours before domestic departures from airports in the Philippines.
Face masks are required for all flights and passengers need to have lighter Carry-On luggage. PAL will only allow up to 2 kilograms in the cabin when before, it has allowed 7kgs.
However, the airline added 5kgs more for passengers’ Free Baggage Allowance.
Passengers are also permitted to carry up to ten 100ml bottles of sanitizers with up to 70% alcohol on board.
When checking in at the airports, passengers will have to undergo thermal scans at the airport entrances and maintain managed social distancing at the check in counters.
Sanitizers will be available and PAL airport staff will be in protective gear, such as masks and gloves. Social distancing compliance will be monitored.
Business and first-class passengers are required to step on the sanitizing floor mat before entering the Mabuhay Lounge.
Lounge staff will be in protective gear (masks and gloves). Meals will be in sealed packaging and beverages will be served on demand.
Social distancing will be managed at the lounge seating areas and sanitizers will be available.
Inflight, PAL will have rigorous cabin cleaning and disinfection and its crew will be in full Personal Protective Equipment.
Meal and snack services will be simplified, with social distancing cabin seating options. HEPA filters will purify the cabin air to protect against viruses.
Upon arrival on their destinations, passengers have to wear facemasks, step on sanitizing floor mats upon deplaning and maintain social distancing. They also need to fill up forms to document their travel and health histories.
Baggage pushcart handles will undergo periodic disinfection and sanitizers will be available.