The new measures come into effect today, May 21, with the resumption of regularly scheduled passenger flights to nine destinations.
“Emirates is implementing a comprehensive set of measures at every step of the traveller’s journey, to enhance the sanitisation of all touchpoints, and ensure the health and safety of our customers and employees. The risk of catching an infection on an aircraft is already very low, but we have spared no effort in reviewing and redesigning every step, from check-in to disembarkation,” said Adel Al Redha, Emirates’ chief operating officer.
“We are working with all the stakeholders in Dubai – including the airport, immigration, health and aviation authorities to implement such measures, and we will continue to review and consult expert advice for any development and changes. We are all aware that we have to adapt to different practices during this pandemic in our day to day activities.
“All these measures, in combination with the proactive pandemic management strategies that the UAE has taken, show the seriousness with which we are taking the health and safety of our local and global communities and will give confidence to the public.”
Emirates has introduced complimentary hygiene kits – comprising of masks, gloves, antibacterial wipes and hand sanitiser – to be given to all passengers upon check in at Dubai International Airport and on flights to Dubai.
Gloves and masks are mandatory for all customers and employees at the airport in Dubai, while only masks are mandated on Emirates flights. On arrival at the airport, thermal scanners at various areas monitor the temperatures of passengers and employees.
Physical distancing indicators placed on the ground and at waiting areas help travellers maintain necessary distance at check-in, immigration, boarding and transfer areas.
The airport team has also installed protective barriers at each check-in desk and immigration counter to provide additional safety reassurance to passengers and employees.
Customers travelling through Dubai International Airport and transferring onto another flight, will go through thermal screening upon disembarkation. Transfer desks have also been installed with protective barriers as a precautionary measure. Airport staff, dressed in personal protective equipment (PPE), will direct customers from a safe distance for extra assistance. Customers will be given an additional hygiene kit at the gate before boarding their connecting flight.
The boarding sequence has been distributed, passengers now boarding by row, from the last to the first, in small counts.
The waiting area has also been altered to adhere to social distancing norms.
Emirates boarding agents, dressed in personal protective equipment (PPE), facilitate boarding while gates are deep cleaned and disinfected after the boarding of every flight.
All cabin crew on board are expected to don PPEs while Emirates has added a cabin service assistant (CSA) to the crew to complement on flights over 1.5 hours. The assistants will ensure that lavatories are cleaned at intervals of 45 minutes.
Each lavatory has been equipped with sanitising soap and hand washing instructions.
Magazines and print reading material will not be available during this time. In premium classes, single use menus and wine lists will be provided to passengers. Comfort items such as mattresses, pillows, blankets, headphones and toys will be hygienically sealed.
Emirates will resume its service with hot meals, using high quality cutlery and crockery, sterilised before each use.
Cabin baggage have to be checked-in, and customers can only bring essential items such as a laptop, handbag, briefcase or baby items on board.
Customers are reminded to bring pens to fill out health declaration forms required for some destinations.
Emirates’ modern aircraft cabins have been fitted with advanced HEPA air filters which remove 99.97 per cent of viruses and eliminate dust, allergens and germs from cabin air for a healthier and safer on-board environment.
After its journey and on landing in Dubai, each aircraft undergoes enhanced cleaning and disinfection processes.
Emirates’ flight and cabin crew are provided with cars for pick up and drop off at their home at the beginning and end of their duty.
Layovers in destination cities have been reduced where possible and on long-haul flights, where layovers are necessary, crew are put up in individual rooms in hotels.
On return to Dubai, Covid-19 tests are done on all crew members, subjecting them to a mandatory 14-day quarantine in their homes after every flight, unless they are on duty.