If you want to travel this summer — and the Central Florida economy relies on people taking a trip here this time of year — that typically means flying.
Boarding a plane in the time of this coronavirus pandemic is a bit tricky, and takes into account risk factors like being within six feet of other flyers and touching surfaces that others touch, like armrests. The risk of infection in a public place is made up of the “dose of exposure”: the amount of time exposed and the amount of virus droplets in the air.
While there is no way to make air travel 100 percent safe, there are ways to make it safer. Right now, you’ll want to think twice about a flight if you are in an at-risk older generation or have pre-existing conditions like diabetes, heart or lung problems.
If you choose to fly, check out airlines’ policies on seating and boarding. Some are minimizing capacity, spacing out passengers and giving the option to change or cancel flights once they reach certain percentage of filled seats (United is notifying passengers if a flight reaches 70 percent capacity through June 30). Some are not using middle seats, leaving empty rows if possible, and boarding from the back of the plane to the front.
Some other tips from travel experts include booking a window seat, which limits the number you’re exposed to in half and distances you from those using the aisle.
Bring hand wipes to disinfect surfaces such as your seat belt and your personal belongings, like your passport. If you cannot find hand wipes, bring a small washcloth soaked in a bleach solution in a zip bag (This would probably freak TSA out less than your personal spray bottle).