EasyJet is to restart international and domestic flights on some of its routes from Monday 15 June 2020.
The flights will be reintroduced for the first time since the airline grounded its fleet on 30 March, and will enforce new safety measures, such as compulsory face masks.
The airline will initially restart some domestic routes in the UK and France, as well as flights from other destinations in Europe. Additional flights will be added in the upcoming weeks, as lockdown measures ease further across Europe.
However, the company has said it will only restart flights where "there is sufficient customer demand to support profitable flying.”
Where will flights restart in the UK?
Easyjet plans to resume flights from the following UK airports:
- London Gatwick
- Belfast International
Where will flights begin in Europe?
The company has announced that flights in Europe will restart in France, Spain, Switzerland and Portugal, in the following cities:
What kind of on-board safety measures will be in place?
Easyjet is planning to implement an enhanced cleaning and disinfection procedure in its aircrafts, along with supplying passengers and crew with disinfectant wipes and hand sanitiser.
It will also make it mandatory for all passengers and cabin crew, as well as its airport staff, to wear masks.
As flights initially recommence, the carrier will temporarily remove its onboard food service to help slow the spread of the virus.
Last month, EasyJet said it was considering blocking the middle seats in its planes. However, it has now decided against such a move, with the company saying this would make flights unprofitable and increase the financial pressure caused by the pandemic.
EasyJet’s chief executive, Johan Lundgren, said the airline was taking “small and carefully planned steps” to gradually resume operations.
“We will continue to closely monitor the situation across Europe so, when more restrictions are lifted, the schedule will continue to build over time to match demand, while also ensuring we are operating efficiently and on routes that our customers want,” he said.
What is the official advice for airlines?
The European Union Aviation Safety Agency and the European Centre for Disease Prevention and Control have announced new guidelines for airlines, to ensure the safety of passengers and crew as flights begin to restart.
The advice includes regular hand washing, as well as compulsory face masks, both while on the plane and inside the airport, and maintaining a safe distance between other people as much as possible.
In addition to this advice, the two European authorities have confirmed that the air quality on board is not a cause for concern, stating “filtered air on aeroplanes is safer and cleaner than many of us breathe on the ground.”