It is necessary at this time to follow social distancing at airports. However, the international airport group believes that it will increase the pre-departure time for passengers.
As passengers will have to follow the aviation safety rules at the airport. It will subsequently, add up to two hours of pre-departure time during peak hours. “A large airport with low volume, they should not need much more time for the passengers to come to the airport to keep the physical distancing.” Said, Angela Gittens, director general of Airports Council International.
In addition, she said, “At a smaller airport or an airport that has peaking, I would say that it is going to be another hour or even two hours.”
Guidelines for Passengers Safety
A UN aviation agency-led task force issued guidelines for airlines and airports. This guideline will bring uniformity in following the safety guidelines during this pandemic. But it has no details for the recovery of the aviation industry.
The guidelines, adopted by the International Civil Aviation Organization suggests that travelers must wear a mask and stand at least a meter apart at airports.
The guidelines address the current rules put in place during the coronavirus pandemic that makes flying different in almost every country. However, the same set of safety guidelines implemented across the world for airports will restore the confidence of passengers.
“The guidelines need to be in place quickly,” said Alexandre de Juniac, director of the International Air Transport Association (IATA), during a virtual press conference. The guideline for safety given will continue to change with time.
Before the pandemic, the airports were heavily crowded. The average number of passengers passed through security check posts was nearly 2 billion. In other words, which are 5.7 million passengers a day. But, these are not normal times.
The ICAO warns on a potential overall reduction of 872 million to just over 1.3 billion international passengers. However, ICAO has issued a forecast on air passengers for 2020. It estimates 1.5 billion fewer international air travelers this year.
In this scenario, the airlines will be losing $198 billion-273 billion in gross operating revenue from their international operations.
Without the pandemic, international passenger demand could have gone up by 67 million this year. Meanwhile, airlines planned to grow their seat capacity by 3.4% over 2019.