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Air travel in India with social distancing guidelines – Airport Entry to Boarding

Passengers’ boarding passes will not be stamped by CISF personnel airports

The COVID-19 pandemic has caused a significant impact on the aviation industry. It has resulted in travel restrictions, shut down of borders, restricted international travel and a slump in demand among travellers while a large number of planes are grounded.

It has also come to light that more than 13 CISF personnel at Delhi, Mumbai and Ahmedabad airports have tested positive for COVID-19 till date and hence countermeasures are being taken to contain its spread by zero touch/contact.

These new regulations can be seen in the accompanying video (Credit – India Today) at the Netaji Subhash Chandra Bose airport in Kolkata. Social distancing is maintained right from entry to the airport to boarding the flight and there is absolutely no contact throughout the checking in process.

At the entrance itself, the passenger’s tickets and identification are to be put through a scanner for verification and will not be physically handled by the CISF personnel. The traveler’s masks will be opened for easy identification. Watch the detailed video below.

Upon entrance to the airport, there are clearly marked lines and social distancing will be strictly adhered to at all times. There will be only 1 person at each counter which has been enclosed with a high glass partition. The boarding pass will be issued and luggage will have to be tagged by the passenger itself and placed onto the luggage belt.

Hand wash for a good 20 seconds in automated machines will follow and even when belongings are kept on the tray, they will not be touched by the CISF as they pass through the scanner unless there is an urgent need. Security checks will continue with no face to face contact and with a metal detector with extended rod while the CISF personnel will all wear full PPE gear.

In the security hold area, there will be a limited number of shops open which will cater to basic supplies. Travellers will not be allowed to do unnecessary movement inside the airport; as was done in the past. Passengers will have to head directly to their gates and wait in that area itself. For seating inside the cabin, every alternate chair will be open for seating of passengers while others will have red tapes across to prevent any seating so as to maintain social distancing.

The earlier order was that passengers were not allowed more than 100 ml of liquid in the hand baggage, but the new order now permits passengers to board the aircraft with liquid sanitizer upto 350 ml. Proper CCTV cameras and infrastructure will have to be maintained through all points and recordings will have to be preserved for 30 days as per current regulations.

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