AC CEO Rovinescu Describes “What We Are Doing” To Counter Coronavirus

Bruce Parkinson, Open Jaw

Calin Rovinescu

In a note sent to Air Canada customers, CEO Calin Rovinescu describes the steps the airline is taking to prevent the spread of COVID-19 and mitigate against its effects.

“Like all of you, we’ve been monitoring the evolving global impact of the novel coronavirus (COVID‑19) and are in constant dialogue with Canadian and international health authorities,” Rovinescu writes. 

“At Air Canada our core value is Safety First, Always ‑- for our customers and for our employees. So I’d like to share what we have been doing in our operation to uphold that commitment.”

Here are some excerpts from the letter:

“At the airport: To promote a more hygienic airport experience, we have placed hand sanitizers in key areas such as check‑in counters, gates and lounges. We also have constant reminders about the importance of hand washing.

Before a flight: If a customer who appears unwell attempts to check‑in or board an aircraft, our agents will make inquiries of the customer in regard to their health. This can include consultation with our own Medical Desk and/or a third‑party health provider. If they are unfit to travel, they will not be permitted to board.

In the air: Our aircraft are equipped with High Efficiency Particulate Air (HEPA) filters which effectively capture 99.9% of particulate from recirculated air in the aircraft cabin. This includes microbial organisms such as bacteria and viruses. These filters are similar to those used in hospital rooms and like those in hospital rooms, they refresh the cabin air every 2 to 3 minutes.

After every flight: Coronaviruses are easily eliminated by routine surface cleaning and sanitization. Air Canada uses cleaning products, including hospital‑grade disinfectants which have a wide-spectrum microbial activity and are proven effective against human coronavirus.”

Rovinescu says the airline will continue to adapt its schedule and route network as developments unfold.

He also described efforts to assist those with booked flights – including a flexible re‑booking policy for existing bookings by allowing a free one‑time change. And the CEO says AC wants to give pax “freedom to travel and book with confidence,” by waiving change fees on new bookings .

The letter ends this way: “Your patience and understanding as we evolve our business to serve you is greatly appreciated. We’re focused on the future and we’re going to keep working hard to earn your loyalty.”


Bruce Parkinson

Bruce Parkinson Editor-in-Chief

An observer and analyst of the Canadian and international travel industries for over 25 years, Bruce uses the pre-dawn hours to prepare a daily news and information package to keep industry members up to date.

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