In order to reduce the risk of coronavirus spread on flights, Qantas and Jetstar will give masks, use sequenced boarding, advise online check-in and ask passengers to limit movement onboard.

Qantas has introduced it’s Fly Well programme comprising of safety measures.

Here are some key measures that will roll out across Qantas and Jetstar from June 12:

Pre-flight guidelines

  • Information sent to all customers before they fly, so they know what to expect.
  • Contactless check-in (via online/app) and self-serve bag drop strongly encouraged, including the use of Q Bag Tags.
  • Hand sanitising stations at departure gates.
  • Temporary changes to Qantas Lounges, including increased physical distancing, hand sanitising stations, enhanced disinfection of surfaces, and adjustments to food and drink service.
  • Working with airports on other safeguards in the terminal, including regular disinfection of security screening points and installing hygiene screens at airline customer service desks, wherever practical.

Onboard guidelines

  • Masks provided to all passengers on each flight.
  • Enhanced cleaning of aircraft with a disinfectant. Focus on high contact areas – seats, seatbelts, overhead lockers, air vents, and toilets.
  • Sanitising wipes given to all passengers to wipe down seat belts, trays and armrests themselves, if preferred.
  • Simplified service and catering to minimise touchpoints for crew and passengers.
  • Passengers asked to limit movement around the cabin, once seated.
  • Sequenced boarding and disembarkation to minimise crowding.

Qantas Group chief executive officer Alan Joyce said,  “We’ll continue to work with government and monitor the rollout of these measures closely, which are designed with safety in mind and help people feel comfortable given the new norms that have emerged in response to the Coronavirus crisis.”

Commenting on the subject of social distancing, Qantas Group Medical Director, Dr. Ian Hosegood, said, “Social distancing on an aircraft isn’t practical the way it is on the ground, and given the low transmission risk on board, we don’t believe it’s necessary in order to be safe. The extra measures we’re putting place will reduce the risk even further.”

Earlier Business Traveller reported on Qantas working with the Australian government on getting exemption from social distancing rules onboard its aircraft.

Domestic flight update: 

Travellers who book any Qantas or Jetstar Australian domestic flight between May 21 and June 30, 2020, for travel from June 12 and 31 October 2020, the airlines will waive the change fee one time if they decide to change their date of travel.

International flight update: 

In terms of international bookings, for travel between August 1 and October 31, 2020, passengers who wish to change their plans, can cancel their booking and retain the full value as a flight credit. Flight credits must be requested by June 30, 2020, and are valid for booking and travel across domestic and international services by December 31, 2021. Jetstar credit vouchers allow up to two years to travel from issue date.