If you will be flying on Canada Day domestically get ready for some changes in relation to COVID-19. Air Canada and WestJet have announced that they will reomove seat distancing as of July 1. According to officials, because the Calgary based airline's flights have HEPA filters installed to clean recirculated air and the air flow in cabins flows from the ceiling to the floor, it did not need the extra barrier. WestJet added the seat backs also provide protection for passengers.
Via release the company said "WestJet has built a robust framework to ensure Canadians can travel safely and responsibly through the airline’s Safety Above All program. The guidance supports the measures that WestJet has implemented to limit the spread of COVID-19," The airline also helps prevent infection through mandatory temperature checks of all passengers, enhanced cleaning and sanitization of all touch points, modifications to its in-flight service, aircraft fogging and a requirement for guests and crew to wear masks. "Safety is at the forefront of every decision we make and as our industry adapts to a new normal, we will continue to adjust our health measures to ensure the safest travel experience. This includes spending millions of dollars in cleaning and sanitizing measures, along with personal protective equipment, to ensure the safety and well-being of our guests and our people."
Online booking is open as of Wednesday on Canada Day. Air Canada soon followed WestJet's decision, vowing to put an end to seat distancing. A spokesperson for Air Canada said the move is part of its COVID-19 strategy and the airline, based in Montreal, also has similar health checks for passengers prior to boarding.
Formerly, Air Canada blocked the sale of seats right next to each other in economy class, and WestJet had done the same throughout its plane, to help prevent the spread of COVID-19. American Airlines also announced Friday that it will start booking flights to full capacity as of Canada Day.