Passengers could be made to wear masks on EU flights even though they won’t be mandatory from next week

By Linsey McNeill
12/05/2022
Home » Passengers could be made to wear masks on EU flights even though they won’t be mandatory from next week

Ryanair says it will still insist on passengers wearing masks on flights to and from 15 countries in the EU, even though officials say they can be removed from next Monday.

The European Centre for Disease Prevention and Control (ECDC) and the European Union Aviation Safety Agency (EASA) announced on Wednesday that masks were no longer necessary on flights.

As a result, mandatory mask-wearing on flights and in airports will be dropped from 16 May.

The EASA said it hoped the move will mark ‘a big step forward in the normalisation of air travel.

It will mean that airlines will be free to implement their own rules on mask wearing.

However, they have been advised to encourage passengers to continue to wear them when travelling to and from countries where they are mandatory on public transport.

Ryanair said masks will be optional from Monday on flights to and from the EU, with the exception of 15 countries.

These are Austria, Cyprus, the Czech Republic, Estonia, France, Germany, Greece, Italy, Latvia, Lithuania, Luxembourg, Malta, the Netherlands, Portugal and Spain.

Ryanair CEO Eddie Wilson said: We expect these States to relax their face mask rules over the coming days in line with these new health guidelines from EASA and the ECDC.

“Intending passengers can check the latest EU face mask regulations on the Re-Open EU website.”

Both the ECDC and the EASA said that face masks remain ‘one of the best protections’ against COVID.

Vulnerable passengers are being advised to continue wearing a mask and people will be asked to observe social distancing in indoor areas.

However, airport operators have been advised by the ECDC not to impose any distancing measures which are likely to lead to a bottleneck.

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