As most of us are staying home during the pandemic and there are only limited amount of commercial airlines operating it probably makes you wonder what it's like to be working at these crazy times. Especially being in such close proximity to people travelling from around the world.
Well I have to say it can be quite intimidating putting yourself out there. Luckily the company I am working for has modified our service quite a bit to make it as hygienic as possible and if we wish we can wear a mask and gloves at any time when onboard.😷
The not so typical day in aviation has become even less typical. The new procedures involve for us to reach out to the handling prior to landing and making sure they are able to provide us with dish washing and laundry service. Also depending on the customers preferance we offer the ability to serve them with plastic cutlery and crockery. Not so glamorous I know! However we need to be able to make the customer feel as safe as possible. What comes to food we still deliver five course menu sourced from the best restaurants and 5 star hotels.
The hot and cold towel service has been suspended for the moment and all the pillows and blankets have been secured and put away from the cabin and only provided on passengers request. All in all it depends very much on the client and making them feel as looked after as possible. After every flight we disinfect the cabin and make sure it is spotless and clean.
Upon landing the crew and the customers both usually need to fill out health forms and have the temperatures measured and the usual quick turnarounds take a bit longer due to all the waiting times and new procedures with customs and passport checks in place.
The handling agents have also transformed and are sometimes hard to spot! I had a very funny moment when arriving to Wuhan, China the other day. On landing I looked out of the aircraft window and thought I had spotted some NASA astronauts going on about some mission until I realised OH! its just our handling guys 😆.
In aviation, we use a lot of the term "ground handling". Which refers to the wide range of services provided to facilitate an aircraft flight. These duties include checking in with passengers, handling baggage, assisting with boarding and security, aircraft ground repositioning, providing or being the intermediate to supply us with water and fueling and of course catering services. To sum it up they provide and help us with all the necessary services we need.