Canadian airports have been busy this week laying out their plans to welcome a nervous but growing travelling public. While they all emphasize safety, important regional differences are emerging.
Electrostatic cleaning, physical distancing, plexiglass, temperature checks, and signage are among the new measures at Vancouver International Airport meant to restore the public’s faith in the safety of aviation.
If there is a glimmer of hope in Canadian aviation, perhaps it is most evident in Vancouver, where a slow emergence from the depths of the pandemic is starting to take shape.
Vancouver International Airport said Tuesday its passenger numbers in April dropped almost 97% from the same month in 2019, suggesting traffic fell more during the pandemic than has previously been reported.
The bill to make Canadians feel safe enough to travel could be in the “hundreds of millions” once the COVID-19 pandemic eases, according to an estimate by the Canadian Airports Council.
“This is the single most significant challenge we have ever faced as an airport authority,” said Roger Butt, the Chair of the St. John’s International Finance and Audit Committee. “We will have to be operating at a net loss for the next few years.”