Qatar Airways crew will be covering up their iconic maroon uniforms with disposable protective suits to stay safe during the coronavirus pandemic.
The full-body personal protective equipment (PPE) suits will be worn by all cabin crew, along with safety goggles, gloves and mask, to provide “even greater reassurance” to passengers on board, the airline said.
The new uniform is part of a range of new measures to be introduced on Qatar Airways flights to limit the potential transmission of the COVID-19.
From next Monday, all passengers will have to wear mask or other face coverings in-flight, with the airline recommending they bring their own.
Large bottles of hand sanitiser will be available in the cabins and cutlery and meals will continue to be served sealed in economy class.
Some of the bigger changes will be seen in the airline’s business class cabin.
Business class meals will be served on trays instead of the regular fancy table setting, and a “cutlery wrap” will be offered as an alternative to the usual cutlery service.
Enhanced privacy of the airline’s lavish Qsuite cabins means passengers can fully close their cabin doors and use a “do not disturb” sign to avoid interactions with crew.
All social areas of the aircraft will also be closed, the airline said.
Meanwhile disinfecting and cleaning of Qatar Airways’ aircraft has been enhanced. Linen and blankets are being washed, dried and pressed at “microbial lethal temperatures” and the airline has ditched ear foam from headsets.
Cabin crew are thermally screened before and after flights and crew schedules have been managed to eliminate risk.
Passengers are encouraged to practice social distancing where possible, on flights as well as during boarding.
Qatar Airways has continued flying to a limited schedule during the pandemic. Last week, the airline announced it was giving away thousands of flights to medical professionals to mark World Nurses Day as a celebration of their work during the crisis.