US airlines lift mask mandates for passengers, employees

After a federal judge in Florida determined that the directive was illegal, the Biden administration will no longer enforce a US mask mandate on public transportation, thereby ending a crucial White House initiative to combat the spread of Covid-19.

On Monday, airlines expressed their delight at the decision, stating that masks would no longer be required:

ALASKA AIRLINES:

“For over two years, face masks have been like boarding passes: you couldn’t fly without one. However, masks are now optional in airports and onboard aircraft, with immediate effect.”

“While we are happy that many of us will be able to see your happy expressions, we recognise that some of you may have conflicting feelings. Please remember to be courteous to one another and that travelling with a mask is still an option.”

AMERICAN AIRLINES:

“At U.S. airports and on domestic flights, our customers and team members will no longer be required to wear face masks.

“Please keep in mind that face masks may still be necessary by local legislation or when going to or from certain international destinations due to country requirements.”

AIR DELTA:

“Masks are now optional for all airport staff, crew members, and consumers within U.S. airports and onboard flights, effective immediately.”

“We are relieved to see the US mask mandate lifted to allow for easier global travel now that COVID-19 has morphed into a common seasonal virus. Thank you for your assistance in adhering to the federal mask mandate and ensuring the safety of each other and our clients during the pandemic.”

UNITED AIRLINES:

“Masks are no longer required on domestic United flights, select international flights (depending on the arriving country’s mask rules), or at United airports, as of today.

“While this means that our employees are no longer required to wear masks – and that we are no longer required to enforce a mask requirement for the vast majority of the flying public – they will be able to do so if they choose, as the CDC continues to strongly recommend wearing a mask on public transportation.”

JETBLUE:

“On JetBlue, wearing a mask is no longer required. Customers and crewmembers are welcome to continue wearing masks at our terminals and on board our aircraft, even if they are no longer needed.”

AIRLINES OF THE SOUTHWEST:

“Southwest staff and guests will be able to choose whether or not to wear a mask, and we encourage them to make the best option for their own health.”

ALLEGIANT TRAVEL CORPORATION:

The federal mask mandate will no longer be enforced by Allegiant. If the guidance changes, we will make the necessary changes to our policy. Passengers and personnel can still choose to wear masks in airports and on planes if they choose to.”

HAWAIIAN HOLDINGS INC:

“Face masks are now optional for our guests and employees on Hawaiian Airlines flights, effective immediately.”

SPIRIT AIRLINES:

Following a federal court order and TSA instruction, face coverings are now optional for Spirit Team Members and Guests onboard our flights.

HOLDINGS OF THE FRONTIER GROUP:

“While masks are no longer required on domestic flights, certain airports or nations may still need them.”

AMERICA’S AIRLINES (INDUSTRY TRADE GROUP):

“As restrictions on our nation’s airlines are relaxed, the high level of immunity and widespread vaccine accessibility in the United States, together with hospital-grade cabin air on aircraft, give a strong, science-based foundation for passengers to travel with confidence.”

“This summer, we look forward to welcome millions of people back to the skies to see loved ones, attend conferences, or enjoy a vacation.”

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