Post Covid-19: Expects Hike In Airfare, Delays – FAAN tells Travelers
There are indications that air passengers in Nigeria will have to be going through series of checks and re-checks from when they arrive till they depart the airport and a slight hike in airfare whenever flight operations resume after the covid-19 lockdown.
Already, the Federal Airports Authority of Nigeria (FAAN), had assured that the agency has made arrangements in terms of passenger facilitation at all the airports.
Speaking at an aviation webinar organised by Women in Aviation (WIA) Nigeria, with the theme: “Aviation: The New Norm in the post COVID,” the general manager, Corporate Affairs, FAAN, Mrs. Henrietta Yakubu, says passengers should expect the delays and long hours of checks and re-checks as a result of the expected surge in passengers and the laid down measures to ensure the mitigation of the effect of the ravaging virus.
She said escorts of VIPs would no longer be allowed to follow their principals into the terminal and such principals would be subjected to all health checks.
To this end, she said passengers are expected to leave their home early hours before their flight to enable them go through the various checks before entering the terminal and after.
“We are going to expect flight delays, flights will experience delays from checks and re-checks. If you are travelling, I will expect a potential traveler to leave home hours before his flight because there is going to be a lot of checks in the front of the terminal.
“We have been told that some activities and procedures will take place in front of the terminal. So, air travelers are expected to leave home very early so that they can get to the airport on time.”
The FAAN spokesperson also explained that passengers should expect that airlines would charge more in terms of airfare, adding that the International Air Transport Association (IATA), had said that there would be 45 per cent increase in fares.
Yakubu stated that the COVID-19 had brought a lot of changes to air travel and to ensure the safety of passengers and airport users, the way of doing things before have to change, adding that the pandemic would make people cut down on non-essentials and lead to low demand of air travel.
She said social distancing would be 100 per cent, temperature screening, wearing of face masks, disinfection of shoes and luggage of passengers would also be carried out 100 per cent regardless of personalities at all airports.
“There will be floor markings indicating where each passenger will wait on the queue, arriving passengers will also be subjected to temperature screening, physical distancing too will be observed while passengers are waiting by the carousel to pick up their luggage.
“Passengers are expected to arrive the airport with their face masks on, their luggage and pairs of shoes to be disinfected. They are expected to observe social/physical distancing.
“Passengers will subject themselves to temperature screening and departure halls will be arranged in such a way that physical distancing too will be observed,” she added.
In her contribution, Mrs. Ebele Okoye, general manager, Customer Service/SERVICOM, FAAN, harped on the decongestion of the terminal building, especially outside, where all sorts of people who do not have business at the airport mill around.
According to her, in reducing contact, the days of opening people’s bag at the airport to search for what is inside should be done away with.
“I will urge all the airports to consider and make provisions for different kinds of passengers, social distancing, adequate information and more importantly, social security.
Okoye urged passengers to save themselves the stress of coming to the airport but rather buy their tickets online, check in online and pay for their trolleys online, to reduce the hours they would have to spend carrying out these activities.
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