Cathay Pacific exempts some passengers from wearing masks while sleeping

Sunday, February 07, 2021

Airline company Cathay Pacific allows passengers who are in business or first class to remove their masks while lying down for sleep in the plane. 

The company issued an internal notice to the crew members on Friday, stating situations where passengers are exempted from wearing masks.

One says “when a passenger is lying flat in business or first class”, they can remove their masks.

Some flight attendants criticized that this practice raised the risk of spreading the virus, which may cause complaints from other passengers. They also expressed concerns about the airline company neglecting their health.

“Under this instruction, many crew members are worried about infecting Covid-19 after the close contact with passengers,” said Cheung Shu-wang, chairman of the Staffs and Workers Union of Hong Kong Civil Airlines. 

He added Cathay Pacific did not disclose the reason for this guideline, and said that: “this measure may aim at bringing convenience to the passengers.”

Cheung also urged Cathay Pacific to explain why part of the customers are allowed not donning the masks on the plane.

Cathay Pacific told The Standard that the latest additional guidelines are designed to help the crew members understand the circumstances which mask wearing is exempted. 

“Seats in first and business class are more spacious with partitions, and passengers are exempted when lying flat for sleep,” it explained. 

The airline company also stated that the aircraft are equipped with filtration systems that are capabble of filtering 99.9999 percent of dust particles, including vius and bacteria.