On the face of it, flying seems to contravene every bit of advice around Covid safety. You have 100 or more people in a confined space, and there’s almost no social distancing. So just how safe is it to fly and how do you protect yourself from catching Covid? Here’s what you need to know.
Like any other activity that brings you into contact with other people at close quarters, there’s a risk of catching Covid on flights, particularly when you factor in the journey to the airport and time spent inside the terminal.
While there is no definitive statistic on the likelihood of catching Covid on a flight — as the risk depends on local infection rates and what pre-boarding safety measures, such as testing, are in place — there are multiple incidences where it has happened. For example, in one paper published in Emerging Infectious Diseases, the US Centers for Disease Control’s journal, one or two infected passengers were thought to have infected four others during an 18-hour flight from Dubai to New Zealand, despite all having tested negative for Covid pre-departure.