Boarding will now take place in groups of 10.
Southwest Airlines has announced some changes to its usual boarding process in order to better help keep proper social distancing practices during the COVID-19 pandemic.
Travelers will now be boarding the airplanes in groups of 10, with people only lining up on one side of the Southwest’s boarding poles. This will help customers “spread out,” according to the airline.
That’s a big difference from what we’ve seen in the past with as many as 60 people — 30 on each side of the boarding pole — huddled together and waiting to board.
The airline is also asking passengers to download their mobile boarding pass prior to leaving home in order to limit the number of exchanges they make with others and to plan on arriving at the airport earlier than usual to allow for new check-in and security processes.
Southwest recommends eating before traveling since drinks and snacks will no longer be served on board in order to limit contact with others.
Southwest is also one of many airlines that will begin requiring passengers to wear face masks while traveling.
These are just a few of the measures that the airline has implemented in response to the coronavirus pandemic.
Others include “using electrostatic anti-microbial spray treatments, cleaning aircraft between each flight using a disinfectant with the same grade that’s used in hospitals and restaurants, implementing physical-distancing measures, limiting the number of passengers on board,” according to the Southwest website.