Everything You Need to Know About COVID-safe Flying in 2021

Qantas Fly Well

Do I need to wear a mask? Why is someone sitting in the middle seat? Find the answers to your commonly asked questions about flying with Qantas.

Now that Australia’s state borders are reopening, you’re no doubt excited about travelling domestically again. For your peace of mind and wellbeing, Qantas has implemented a range of safety measures across airports and on our planes as part of our Fly Well program, including enhanced cleaning protocols and making hand sanitiser available at all points of your journey. But we know you have questions – and we’ve answered some of the most common ones below.

Why is someone sitting next to me on my flight? 

The risk of contracting COVID-19 on a Qantas plane is extremely low. The air conditioners on all planes are fitted with hospital-grade HEPA (high-efficiency particulate air) filters that remove 99.9 per cent of all air particles – including viruses such as coronavirus – and the air in the cabin is refreshed every few minutes. The air flows from the ceiling to the floor and as people are seated next to each other, rather than face-to-face, this reduces the risk even further. 

Do I need to wear a mask? 

The new Federal Government requirement is that you must wear a mask when flying. You will need to wear a mask as soon as you enter the airport and inflight. We provide a mask to all passengers at the boarding gate as part of our Fly Well pack, which also includes sanitising wipes. You may also bring your own. Guidelines are subject to change; please visit qantas.com/flywell for the latest advice before you fly. 

Are check-in and boarding processes different? 

To minimise crowding at check-in kiosks and save you time, we’re asking passengers to check in using their Qantas app or online in the 24 hours before their flight and to use the Self-service Bag Drop for checked luggage. You don’t need to arrive earlier for your flight; we still recommend you check in 45 minutes before your departure time. When it’s time to board the plane, you’ll scan your boarding pass yourself. Social distancing is in place throughout airports, including at departure gates and check-in areas. 

Do I need to have a COVID-19 test before I fly? 

You don’t need to have a negative COVID-19 test before boarding a domestic flight. But you will need to fill out a pre-travel health screen form 48 hours before you fly, which includes questions on whether you’ve been in contact with a suspected COVID-19 case in the past fortnight and whether you have any symptoms, including a sore throat, and undergo a temperature check at check-in. 

What do I do if I feel sick before or during my flight? 

If you feel sick on the plane, let the cabin crew know immediately. If you feel unwell and experience symptoms associated with COVID-19, such as fever, fatigue, a runny nose, cough or shortness of breath, in the week before your flight, you should defer your travel plans and seek medical advice. 

How have the Qantas lounges changed? 

Now that many Qantas Business and Qantas Club lounges are open, there are a few new requirements in place. You’ll need to provide your details on entry, in case we need to contact you, and there are limits to the number of people that can be in each lounge at any one time, based on social-distancing rules. Self-serve buffets have been replaced by hosted food and beverage services – but don’t worry, we won’t judge you if you go back for seconds! Go to qantas.com/flywell to check if the lounge at your departure airport is open. 

For more information, visit qantas.com/flywell

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