Airways are beginning to promote a brand new perk to carry passengers again practically a 12 months after the pandemic began: vaccinated pilots and flight attendants.
On Wednesday, Etihad Airways announced it was “the primary airline on the earth with 100% vaccinated crew on board.” To not be outdone, Singapore Airways Group said that its three carriers — Singapore Airways, SilkAir and Scoot — on Thursday could be among the many first airways on the earth to function flights with all pilots and cabin crew vaccinated.
The CEO of United Airways mentioned final month that he needs to make the vaccine obligatory for workers, which the airline continues to be contemplating. And airline and aviation staff in america have requested to be given precedence for vaccinations, in accordance with news reports.
The strikes come as airways attempt to recuperate from the worst 12 months on document for air journey demand. The Worldwide Air Transport Affiliation said demand fell by practically 66 % in 2020 in comparison with the earlier 12 months.
“Vaccinations can be key to the reopening of borders and to enhancing journey confidence, in tandem with sturdy testing regimes and the wide-ranging secure administration measures which are in place on the bottom and within the air,” Singapore Airways CEO Goh Choon Phong mentioned in a statement. “They provide better safety for our individuals and supply an added layer of assurance to our prospects.”
Greater than 90 % of the Singapore firm’s pilots and crew have signed up for the vaccine to date, in accordance with a information launch. Singapore has made aviation staff a precedence for vaccinations.
Etihad, the nationwide provider of the United Arab Emirates, mentioned greater than 75 % of its complete workers has acquired at the very least one dose of the vaccine. All of its working pilots and cabin crew have been vaccinated. The airline already made testing obligatory for each passenger and crew member earlier than flying.
“We proactively made the vaccine obtainable to all our workers to not solely assist fight the consequences of COVID-19 however to make vacationers really feel assured and reassured the subsequent time they fly with us,” Tony Douglas, group chief government of Etihad Aviation Group, mentioned in a statement.
Some international locations are letting absolutely vaccinated guests avoid entry necessities corresponding to quarantines, and the Facilities for Illness Management and Prevention said Wednesday that individuals who have been absolutely vaccinated don’t need to quarantine after they’ve been uncovered to somebody with the virus.
However infectious-disease specialists say even vaccinated individuals ought to nonetheless restrict journey to important journeys and use precautions like carrying masks and maintaining a distance. It’s nonetheless not clear if individuals who have been inoculated can transmit the virus, even when they’re protected in opposition to getting sick.
“You continue to want to cut back your threat till nearly all of the inhabitants is protected,” Jessica Malaty Rivera, an epidemiologist with the COVID Tracking Project, instructed The Washington Submit.
Workers author Natalie B. Compton contributed to this report.