Will coronavirus kill off plane food? Southwest Airlines stops food and drink service

CORONAVIRUS could cause the end of plane food and drink as airlines start to reduce in-flight services.

Southwest Airlines is just one of the carriers who have stopped all meal services and snack options as they continue to fly during the pandemic.

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The airline, which often offers food including pretzels, crisps and soft drinks on flights, announced: "We are not serving snacks or beverages in-flight to limit personal contact."

The low-cost carrier has introduced the stringent measures along with removing the in-flight magazine and enforcing face masks for passengers in the cabin.

Thai carriers AirAsia and Lion Air as well as Indian carrier IndiGo have also suspended in-flight meal services.

UK airlines are yet to roll this out, although it could be something suggested by large carriers to reduce the spread of the virus.

Already being considered are social distancing rules such as the middle seat being left empty, something easyJet has suggested, but Ryanair has slammed.

Airports such as London Stansted and Manchester Airport are to make face masks compulsory, along with US carriers including American Airlines, United and Delta.

Wizz Air, one of the few airlines to resume flights from the UK, are also making face masks mandatory and have removed all magazines and paper from the seat pockets.

However, experts have warned that new guidelines could result in much longer queue times at airports as well as more expensive flights.

Andrew Charlton, managing director of Aviation Advocacy told The Times: "There will be fewer flights, fewer seats available, prices will go up and there will be very uncomfortable conditions because of the demand to wear personal protective equipment and maintain social distancing.

"Even if it starts raining vaccines tonight, we are still looking at two years at least to get back to levels seen before the outbreak."

"And it is probably going to be more like five years."

Four hour queues at security are also expected, as well as reduced flying schedules.

However, Heathrow bossJohn Holland-Kaye warned that social distancing would be "impossible" at airports – as each plane would have a 1km boarding queue.

He wrote in the Daily Telegraph: "Forget social distancing – it won’t work in ­aviation or any other form of public transport. And the problem is not the plane, it is the lack of space in the airport."

A terrifying video has revealed exactly how coughing on an airplane can propel coronavirus through the whole cabin – meaning everyone is infected.

In the video, tiny saliva droplets from one cough propel germs throughout the plane.

One design firm has offered their own suggestion on staying safe on planes – with glass screens on every seat.


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