Getting ready for Australia and other key markets opening for tourism, Fiji Airways has taken the cover off its ambitious ‘Travel Ready’ COVID-preparedness measures. As New Zealand, Fiji, Australia, Europe and other countries mull slowly opening borders and creating a ‘South Pacific bubble’, Fiji Airways has come racing out of the gate with a comprehensive ‘Travel Ready’ programme.
This programme, made in conjunction with World Health Organisation, IATA and ICAO, ‘reviews all interaction points across the Fiji Airways Customer Experience’; then draws up health and safety measures to be put in place to safeguard both travellers, the airline crew and the support staff.
The biggest item on the programme is the creation of a new role aboard the flight –Customer Wellness Champions! These medically-qualified professional will maintain traveller medical safety standards and promote wellness of all aboard the flight. And yes, this will be implemented across all Fiji Airways connections.
Furthermore, there is a whole list of health and safety rules which will be implemented along with the above. For example, face-masks are now mandatory for travel in both Fiji Airways and Fiji Link flights. Boarding passes will be issued only when passengers will show up wearing masks. Travellers will be advised with up-to-date information about their destination’s entry requirements by our South Pacific Specialists. At the airport, customers can expect enhanced health screenings, temperature checks, physical distancing and spaced-out counters. Hand sanitisers will be available for all at convenient contact-points. All checked-in bags will be disinfected before being loaded onto the aircraft.
All travellers have to keep their masks on wherever practical throughout the duration of their journey, except small children and those with medically-proven grounds of not being able to do so. Then, all customer-facing staff will be seen sporting full Personal Protective Equipment (PPEs) – this includes all airport/ lounge staff and the cabin crew. The onboard service and experience have been reworked to reduce contact-points between customers and crew.
As a part of the Travel ready programme, all Fiji Airways and Fiji Link aircraft will undergo daily enhanced deep cleaning. This includes fogging (which is basically misting spaces) and wiping all surfaces with broad-spectrum disinfectants.
Boarding will be done by seat-rows to reduce contact between customers – this means seating passengers will starting from the rear of the aircraft for Fiji Airways and front of the aircraft for Fiji Link.
Onboard the aircraft, in-cabin air is filtered and recirculated through heavy-duty HEPA (High Efficiency Particulate Arrestors) filters. In short, all the in-cabin air completely changes every 3 minutes – a much higher rate of air-flow than what people experience in most other indoor environments.
Meals for business class travellers will now be delivered on a single tray. Business Class amenity kits will include specially designed facemasks, along with hand gloves and hygiene packs. The meals for Economy Class has been redesigned in a special ‘Food for Thought’ packaging, which reduces contact between customers and crew. This simplified meal service is in an eco-friendly packaging and will save up to half a million litres of water a year and remove up to two tonnes of plastics annually from onboard.
In a temporary change, magazines and newspapers will not be available onboard. Also, customers will receive sanitised headsets in sealed packs. Lavatories onboard will be sanitised more frequently, while high-touch surfaces will be disinfected after every flight.
Besides the Customer Wellness Champions, all Fiji Airways cabin crew and pilots will be trained specifically for flight operations in a COVID-19 travel world, which includes handling of medical issues onboard.As of right now, Fiji Airways will await approval from authorities in Fiji and its key international markets before announcing international flight schedules. So, while the wait time is steadily decreasing, Fiji Airways is Travel Ready and so are we (#ourbulaspiritawaitsyou)! Are you?
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