Hey Travelers! We have our first Visitor’s post by Kirti Gautam, Food Safety Technocrat & a Wanderlust. It is specifically on safety of travelling diaries post Lock down.
My Journey from New Delhi to Ranchi Post Lockdown
Many things are changed due to COVID 19 Pandemic which are easily identiﬁable if you are a frequent traveler.
My ﬂight with GoAir was on June 16th, 2020 from one of the busiest Airport Terminals in the country, Terminal-3 from New Delhi to Ranchi (Capital of Jharkhand). For the ﬁrst time I saw IGI airport with less number of people. Its relatively less compared to older days (prior to pandemic).
So the very ﬁrst and important point is that you have to reach at least 2.5 to 3 hours earlier.
- Identity verification at the Entry:
At the entry gate passengers were maintaining physical distancing while waiting for their turn in a long queue which was taking a little longer than usual. Still few were failing to do it. Reason being disobedient and due to confusion between many other activities.
“After reaching the airport, the very ﬁrst thing one can see is the self service station for printing the boarding pass even though the web check-in is a mandate.”
“After collecting my boarding pass I got my bags sanitized with UV radiation in a tunnel outside the entry gate.”
“The airport security officials were checking the boarding pass and ID card at the entry point maintaining physical distancing with acrylic barrier stand.”
After that airport staff checked the body temperature. I also got my shoes sanitized with some liquid in the tray. They also asked for the Aarogya setu App. I recently changed my cellphone and was fortunately carrying my old phone.
“I was allowed to enter the airport only after showing Aarogya Setu app in operative condition. So make sure you have Aarogya Setu app in your mobile.”
- Inside the Airport:
Announcements for maintaining the physical distancing were being made regularly but most of the people were not lending their ears to it. I submitted my bags at the boarding pass collection counter after getting it stamped and headed towards the further security Check-in process.
At the security check-in, for their own safety, the security staffs were not touching the bags and trays of passengers.
They were using some plastic flap kind of thing to push the baggage and tray items forward. While getting checked by security staff, the metal detector was taking a bit longer than usual, to avoid the close contact. Here they didn’t put any ink stamp on the boarding pass, just scanned and I was good to go!
Terminal 3 was so quiet. The lounge was also closed and the middle seats of the three seater sitting bench was tagged for not to be used.
At the boarding check, the staff asked us to put our boarding pass under the scanner which they used to do earlier.
The airline staff provided the PPE kit to the passengers having the middle seats. The PPE kit was containing a knee length apron with a velcro and a strap (to tie the apron), a face mask, a face shield and a small pocket sanitizer.
We are supposed to wear these PPEs right in front of them. While entering the aircraft, the Crew members were also properly covered with PPEs.
The Food and beverage services were not in operation to avoid the close contact, also not the on board merchandising. If you feel thirsty or going to the washroom, you have to inform the crew. Only after their permission, you are allowed to use those services.
To maintain physical distancing while deboarding, the cabin crew announced that only the passengers sitting on the first four rows were allowed to deboard at a time and so on. As always few impatient passengers tried to rush but they were stopped by crew members.
- De-Gowning & Baggage Collection
After deboarding I had to remove all the PPEs and dump it in the garbage bin which was already full.
It took few extra minutes for the baggage collection point as the first few passengers were allowed to go.
Before collecting your bag, a team of officials check the temperature and take a declaration from you if you are going to travel to another state in the next 72 hours. There was also a long queue maintaining the distancing with the help of floor markers.
If you are planning to travel in the upcoming days, make sure to keep these points in mind. Have a SAFE JOURNEY!
OM NAMAH SHIVAYE!