By Steve Hartridge, published 7/05/20
Air Canada will this month launch Air Canada CleanCare+, a programme for personal safety and enhanced aircraft grooming designed to provide customers with greater peace of mind during all stages of travel with the airline.
Earmarked for a May 15 start date, CleanCare+ aims to reduce the risk of exposure to COVID-19 through such measures as mandatory pre-flight customer temperature checks, health questionnaires, seat assignment policies to allow for more personal space in Economy Class on all flights and by providing all customers with care kits for hand cleaning and hygiene.
Customers who fail the infra-red temperature check at all airports Air Canada flies from and deemed unfit to travel will be rebooked onto a future fight at no cost – but will be required to obtain medical clearance prior to travel.
To build in more personal space in Economy Class, the airline will automatically block the sale of adjacent seats and cap the total number of seats sold for each flight.
It claims no customer in Economy Class will be required to sit immediately adjacent to another “unless they are required to do so to assist another customer with whom they are travelling”. This policy will be in place until at least until June 30, 2020.
CleanCare+ will also strengthen what Air Canada says is industry-leading cabin grooming standards by the introduction of electrostatic spraying of cabin interiors.
The carrier will also expand its existing aircraft grooming procedures, which already incorporate the use of hospital grade disinfectant and specialized techniques to maintain cabin cleanliness across its fleet.
In an early response to COVID-19, Air Canada had previously introduced Personal Protective Equipment (PPE) for employees and was the first North American carrier to require face coverings for customers.
The airline is also considering adding other innovations to CleanCare+ as and when they become available, such as advanced screening tools for blood oxygen level testing.
“While we are eager to see the reopening of economies and the restart of commercial aviation, the safety of our customers and employees is Air Canada’s core value and we aim to establish the highest standards of hygiene, cleanliness and attention to public health guidelines,” said its President and Chief Executive Officer, Calin Rovinescu.
“Air Canada CleanCare+ will not only provide protections at the personal level, by better monitoring our customers’ fitness to fly and providing for more personal space in Economy Class, but it also sets new standards for cabin cleanliness and ensures our employees have the best tools to maintain it,” added Rovinescu.