Holidays have been given the green light for many people around the world, however, in the wake of the coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic, new airline rules mean that the travel experience is likely to be very different. Many of the new changes are in place to ensure heightened hygiene and social distancing measures.
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While passengers might be aware they will now need to bring adequate hand sanitiser and enough face masks for the duration of their flight, there are some other vital supplies they could be left suffering without.
A number of airlines have decided to limit or altogether stop their usual food service in a bid to limit contact between crew and passengers.
While this may not cause such an issue for short-haul flights, longer journeys could mean customers who aren’t prepared are left with a rumbling tummy.
easyJet, Ryanair, TUI, British Airways and Virgin Atlantic have all made amendments to the type of food service they provide – with some offering more than others.
Speaking to the BBC, travel expert Simon Calder revealed there are no set guidelines for food and drink services, and the type of service onboard varies greatly from airline to airline.
“It is all different depending on what airline you are referring to,” said the expert.
“I imagine this one is Ryanair which is even selling scratch cards, can you believe?
“Aer Lingus and easyJet are simply giving you a glass of water if you ask for one, not serving any food or drinks.
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“British Airways gives you a bag with crisps, a biscuit and a bottle of water in, which obviously you have to remove your mask for.”
easyJet has all together halted its food and drink service onboard flights.
Travellers who are jetting off with the orange-tipped carrier should plan in advance and be sure to bring some snacks onboard with them.
However, customers should also be cautious about liquids, and ensure they purchase them only once they are through airport security.
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Liquids amounting to more than 100ml will not be allowed through security.
Though Ryanair continues to offer a food service to passengers, this will be limited to wrapped snacks and cold drinks only.
Payments must also be made by card.
British Airways similarly will be providing just one prepackaged meal to customers.
Bottled water and hot drinks will be available on request, meanwhile, on short-haul flights, food and drink will no longer be available for purchase.
Holidaymakers flying with TUI are advised to order any meals prior to their departure, and payments will be cashless.
Virgin Atlantic will offer just one main meal service, alongside juices and soft drinks.
Orange juice and water will be available throughout the journey.
Customers who forget to pre-pack a snack prior to arriving at the airport should still be able to buy food from some shops in the departure lounge, though in UK airports the offering will be minimal.
However, Mr Calder has advised that certain essential shops continue to be open.
Speaking to the BBC he said: “Actually, although almost nothing is open airside, whichever airport you’re at if there is a well known high street chemist [there], that will be open.”
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