After a ruling in Florida on Monday the 18th of April, US airlines will remove the mask requirement on flights, both domestic and international. Many airlines in the US have already put this into action.
On Monday, a federal judge in Florida ruled that the current requirement for masks to be worn on all flights was ‘unlawful’. The ruling judge claimed that the US Center for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) had exceeded its authority with this mandate. They had also neglected to seek public comment and failed to provide an adequate explanation for their decision to put this requirement in place.
The mask requirement on flights in the US has been in place for the past 14 months after a decision from the CDC based on Covid rates. This requirement was to be extended in a decision last week, pushing the extension to the 3rd of May. This extension was overruled by the ruling on Monday.
Following the announcement last week, many travellers and travel businesses were in an uproar about the mask requirement on flights from the US. Many travel industry members asked the US to reconsider this ruling, which has now come to a head. Many businesses are thrilled to hear this news.
Major US flight carriers have already announced that they will no longer require masks on any domestic flights and all international flights where the destination does not require face coverings. This includes United Airlines, American Airlines, Delta Air Lines, Alaska Airlines, and more, with others expected to lift the mask requirement on flights soon.
The CDC have stated that they still recommend travellers wear face masks or face coverings on international flights.
On this White House representatives said, “Due to today’s court ruling, effective immediately, TSA will no longer enforce its security directives and emergency amendment requiring mask use on public transportation and transportation hubs.
“TSA will also rescind the new security directives that were scheduled to take effect tomorrow (Tuesday).
“CDC continues to recommend that people wear masks in indoor public transportation settings at this time.”
The US Travel Association also commented and said, “The current decision to halt enforcement of the federal mask mandate effectively returns the choice of mask usage on planes and other forms of public transportation to travellers and travel industry workers, a further step toward endemic management of Covid.
“We also continue to urge the administration to immediately end pre-departure testing for vaccinated inbound international passengers, which discourages travel and provides limited public health benefits.”
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