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Thursday, September 21, 2023

Dutch Airline Cutting Service and Blocking Off a Toilet On China Flights

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Hospital-grade face masks and splash-resistant eyewear will be made available to flight attendants working on services out of China by the national airline of the Netherlands, KLM. The choice was made in response to direct requests from flight attendants who felt uncomfortable working on flights in the area because to the escalating COVID-19 outbreak in China.

A representative for the Amsterdam-based airline stated that it would reduce onboard amenities on flights from China and would close off at least one restroom for crew use only.

The choice is similar to the initial action taken by KLM and other airlines to address the appearance of COVID-19 at the beginning of the pandemic in early 2020. It is understood that these extra pandemic precautions only apply to flights departing from China.

A representative for the airline confirmed the choice and stated that additional safeguards were being provided on return flights because “colleagues have indicated their wish to work in this way.” The business previously followed tight health standards on flights to China because of local requirements.

“We are following with interest the consultations in Brussels today where European member states are discussing entry requirements,” a statement from the airline continued.

In order to address arrivals from China as a bloc, Europe’s top health officials are anticipated to recommend pre-departure testing requirements that are required. Italy, Spain, and France, among others, have already unilaterally added more pandemic requirements for travelers arriving from China.

Regarding the circumstance in China, KLM stated that it was also in “close communication” with the Dutch Ministry of Health. The airline presently does not offer direct flights to China, but it does provide a “shuttle” service from Soul, South Korea to Shanghai and Hangzhou.

The airline also provides a shuttle service from Bangkok, Thailand, to Hong Kong.

Due to the significant possibility of the aircrew being held permanently in government-run quarantine facilities, KLM suspended operating direct flights to mainland China and Hong Kong.

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