Airplane passenger cabins are confined spaces shared by strangers. This increases your risk of catching COVID-19 and other diseases. So, what should we look for in a mask for flights and what are the makings of the best face mask for air travel? There are 4 main points to consider when looking for the best travel mask for you:
1. Other passengers’ behavior:
While the CDC’s guidelines require everyone to wear masks during flights, not everyone on the plane does this consistently or well. Incorrect mask positioning, poor mask selection, overusing disposable masks and mask removal could all put you at risk of catching COVID-19 from other passengers.
2. Air quality:
Air quality in the passenger cabin is comprised of 3 components: the number of people with COVID-19 on the plane and how crowded the passenger cabin is, the fresh air introduced from the outside of the plane into the passenger cabin and the filtered air coming from the planes’ filtration system.
Bear in mind that even the best aircraft HEPA filtration systems require several minutes to cover the entire volume of air on the plane, meaning there is always air that is unfiltered at any given moment. Also, these filtration systems are not working at full capacity before takeoff and after landing. This shifts the responsibility for your protection to you, through your mask selection.