If you read the travel news every day like I do, you’re probably a little confused about what’s going on in the world regarding COVID-19 and restrictions. More and more countries and companies are loosening or doing away with restrictions and entry requirements while some are tightening them (ahem, China).

The latest is the United Kingdom, whose Secretary of State for Transport just announced via Twitter an important travel update. Grant Shapps tweeted: “TRAVEL UPDATE All remaining Covid travel measures, including the Passenger Locator Form and tests for all arrivals, will be stood down for travel to the UK from 4am on 18 March. These changes are possible due to our vaccine rollout and mean greater freedom in time for Easter.”

This is huge news and a relief to most travelers since this means there are no more tedious or expensive steps to jump through when entering the country. On top of that Heathrow Airport and their two biggest operators made their own announcements which are making headlines worldwide.

Heathrow Airport tweeted: “Effective from Wednesday 16 March, we’ll remove the requirement for wearing face coverings at the airport. We still strongly encourage both colleagues & passengers to wear them, particularly when they come into close contact with others, but this will no longer be mandatory. Passengers may still be required to wear a face covering onboard their flight and should check the airlines’ requirements before travelling.”

British Airways tweeted: “From 16 March, our face mask policy is changing. Where we’re clear the destination you’re travelling to doesn’t require a face mask on board, it will become optional 😷 ✈️ Please continue to respect fellow passengers’ mask preferences in these instances.”

Virgin Atlantic made a similar announcement when they tweeted: “With the legal requirement to wear a face mask now removed in England, we believe our customers should have the personal choice whether to wear a mask onboard 🛫 The mask rules that apply will depend on the route you’re flying, because requirements differ by destination.”


Even with these restrictions loosened, I’m betting that the majority of travelers will still be wearing masks at least for the first few months. Especially with COVID cases on the rise again. The Daily Mail just shared the numbers from the UK’s daily dashboard data. Unfortunately, it shows that United Kingdom Covid cases have jumped 77 percent in the past week and the U.S. usually follows the UK in terms of the virus so this is not good news.

I’ll be wearing my KN95 mask when I travel through LHR, how about you?

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1 Comment On "The U.K., Heathrow Airport, British Airways and Virgin Atlantic all Ease Mask Rules"
  1. Marlin Yoder|

    You think the majority will be wearing masks for the next few months? Very doubtful.

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