I noticed a slight variation on the mask announcement on my United flight last night: passengers are now reminded they can only “briefly” remove their mask to eat or drink while onboard. Say goodbye to a long cup of coffee onboard as United Airlines closes a mask loophole.
United Airlines Closes Mask Loophole
The exception language to the mask announcement has been modified slightly to stress that face coverings can only briefly be removed to eat or drink:
“While you can remove your face covering briefly to eat or drink, you must immediately put it back on afterward.”
Previously, passengers were simply told they need not wear masks while eating or drinking.
A United spokesperson confirms:
“The vast majority of our customers are complying with the face covering policy. This is just one more step toward ensuring customer and crew safety by allowing customers who are eating and drinking to remove their face masks — but they need to immediately put it back on when they’re done.”
Indeed, in more than a dozen United flights over the last couple months I have not noticed anyone defy the mask policy.
Masks are part of a “Swiss cheese” approach to protection. Any one thing may have holes, but combined with other precautionary measures it stacks up to create the safest environment possible (which isn’t safe, just safer). Ultimately, I’m just thankful for the privilege to be flying again and will comply with all reasonable safety measures in order to continue to do so.
image: United Airlines