MIAMI – Canadian airline WestJet (WS) announced last week it would resume service to 45 Canadian, 5 American, and 1 Mexican destination starting on July 5.
This addition approximately doubles its June schedule but is still down about 75% from its schedule from summer 2019.
WestJet reduced its schedule back in late March amid global shutdowns, and suffered major economic strain as a result.
The airline hopes that the additions to its schedule will allow Canadians to feel more confident in traveling around Canada and into the United States.
WestJet has also implemented health and safety measures to ensure their passengers feel safe on board.
Flying is still currently the only way to cross the Canadian-American border, at least until the end of July when roads connecting the countries may open again.
Whilst a 14-day self-isolation is still mandatory for anyone entering Canada after traveling abroad, it is not required by the American Center for Disease Control and Prevention.
COVID Safety Measures in Canada
Transport Canada has mandated the use of masks by all passengers traveling by air. Whilst not required in airports, masks are mandatory while boarding and wherever two-meters of separation is deemed impossible.
Further, checks are done on each passenger to ensure they are free of COVID symptoms. Nevertheless, masks and adequate separation are still required as people who are asymptomatic can still spread the virus.
Airlines like WS aren’t selling the maximum amount of seats on board their flights in order to maintain adequate distance and allow people to be comfortable during their flight.
Other measures include flight attendants wearing full Personal Protective Equipment including gowns, gloves, glasses, and masks onboard all WS flights.
Low prices for flights will likely prove to be very attractive to travelers as the stress around COVID falls. However, as airlines increase flights, health officials will have to keep a close eye on the number of cases to ensure the moves are not coming too early.