Flying is one thing I’ve been avoiding during this whole pandemic business, but once I got out and did it, I was impressed by how well everything was handled. It was actually EASIER flying now due to a few COVID-required tweaks in the way things are done. The only downside is wearing that darn mask the whole time, but that’s something we all just have to get used to for a while. I flew a commercial airline, but if you can afford it and want to avoid all this COVID business, you could always use a site like Jettly and book a private jet. But since I can’t do that (darn!), here’s my experience flying coach on Delta.
The blog has been a bit quiet over the past week, since I’ve been out of town visiting my grandmother. She was in the hospital for a month after her intestines collapsed, followed by two bouts of pneumonia and a stint in the ICU. Due to COVID regulations, visiting at the hospital was limited, so as soon as she was released, I hopped on a plane and flew to Alabama.
One thing I’ve learned over the years is not to wait if you are thinking of visiting family or friends. You just never know what is going to happen. And while flying was one of the last things I wanted to do, nothing was going to stop me from seeing my grandma. And now that I have flown, I’m happy to say I won’t have a problem doing it again!
Changes in Flying Due to COVID
I don’t know if all the airlines are doing the same thing, but I flew Delta and thought they did a great job of adjusting to the pandemic situation.
1- They fill the plane from the rear
No more rushing to try and get in that early boarding group! Unless you are in 1st class or have special pre-boarding, then you get called to board based on your seat. This makes it much easier and makes a lot more sense anyway. It’s always stressful to be in the last boarding group and find there’s no room in the overhead for your carry-on.
2- There’s plenty of elbow room
Delta is leaving the center seat open, so on every flight I had plenty of room and nobody seated next to me. It was really nice! And no worries about being stuck in a middle seat. Everyone got an aisle or a window.
3- Sanitizer for everyone
When you walk on the plane, they hand you a little hand sanitizer wipe. There are also sanitizer dispensers placed on the wall of the plane and near the bathroom.
4 – Prepackaged snacks and water
I was on a short flight, so we just got snacks and water. They handed out little baggies with a few snacks, a small bottled watered, napkin and another sanitizer wipe. No choices on beverage or snack preference- everybody got a baggie. Simple, easy and efficient.
5 – People didn’t crowd the aisles
Normally when the plane lands, it seems like everyone jumps up and crams the aisles just to stand there until the door opens. But for the most part, people respected each others space and let the rows in front of them get up, get their bags and get moving before they got up. It made things go pretty smoothly.
6 – A lot of stores and restaurants closed
The one downside I noticed was at the airports, where most of the shopping places were closed and also many of the restaurants. There was a limited food selection so what was opened usually had a line. So if you are flying and want to get food, jump on it when you see it.
7 – Masks are a necessity
Face masks are just a new part of life for us now, and they are required at the airport and on the plane. And don’t worry if you forget or lose yours- there’s handy vending machines all over the airport selling them!
A Great Trip Overall
I was a little worried about flying but now that I know how well things are being handled, I wouldn’t hesitate to fly again. And if you are thinking about flying, I highly recommend going through the TSA Pre-check program! It makes getting through security SO easy. I breezed through in less than 5 minutes. You have to apply and pay a fee (I think it was around $80 when I did it) and then it’s good for five years. But you don’t have to worry about taking off your shoes or removing laptops and liquids from your bags. And you get to skip the main line and go through the one usually reserved for first class and crew members.
I was so glad to spend some time with my grandma, and I’m happy to report she is improving and doing much better. And I hope to visit again soon now that I know how easy it is. I’d like to at least do one more trip before they start adding people back to those middle seats! I’m going to miss that.