Coronavirus: Going to Lanzarote soon... - British Lung Foun...

British Lung Foundation

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Going to Lanzarote soon and because of bronchiectasis I'm a bit worried about the latest virus. Does anyone ever wear a mask when flying because of air-conditioning? I have in the past ended up with infection after flights and wonder if this would help stave off any problems. Suggestions?

11 Replies

Hello paddlin-maddlin . 😊

Wear a mask and gloves. When you board wipe down the seat (and your travel partners) with alcohol wipes and the table. If possible use your own blanket and pillow. Do not touch the pocket in the seat in front of you. Be safe and bon voyage. xx 👋

P.S. Please take sane precautions if you stay at a hotel. Wipe down the tables, chairs, bedside tables, phone ,door handles and ESPECIALLY the remote control.

Thanks Caspiana, will do.

I agree with Caspiana, I wear a mask here in UK at certain places with lots of People. Better to be safe than sorry, Enjoy your Holiday xxx

Thanks Hacienda, thought this might be the case.

Dr. Mark Gendreau, medical director and vice chair of emergency medicine at Lahey Medical Center-Peabody in Massachusetts, just so happens to be something of an expert when it comes to the spread of infectious diseases as a result of air travel, and he spoke to Travel + Leisure about his thoughts on the benefit of keeping your air vent on.

"For airborne viruses, it is incredibly important to ventilate, since ventilation becomes your main means of control besides isolating the affected person," Dr Gendreau explained.

The one thing you do on a plane that massively increases your chance of getting sick


Air con is especially important in the prevention of spreading airborne viruses, which are transmitted by tiny droplets of nuclei that can lurk in the air for up to five hours. The doctor explains that these droplets are prevented from reaching you, however, if you leave your vent on. This is because the flow of air creates an air barrier around you which blocks the particles from getting all up in your grill.

And it's interesting, because there's an assumption from most people that germs are spread further thanks to air con broadening their reach. But Dr Gendreau explained that, actually, "the air that you’re typically breathing and exposed to is usually anywhere from two to five rows surrounding your seat.

"The flow pattern of air on an aircraft doesn’t necessarily work front to back, or back to front. It’s actually compartmentalised into various sections on the aircraft," he told Travel + Leisure.

So there you go: if you want to keep sicky germs at bay, keep that air con flowing. Or, you know, wear some kind of mask.

Wow! Thanks so much, wouldn't have thought this at all,but, I bow to superior knowledge here.

But isnt the air recirculated . I vaguely remember someting about fresh air coming in through engine to warm it , picking up a contaminant and causing another health problem. If it is filtered does it retain viruses. Need more info to be sure.

That's what I would have thought too. Thanks for replying.

I think due to the current virus I would wear a mask and take hand gel ( not sure you can take this through customs, buy it on the other side) and take your rescue meds with you, just in case. My friends came back from Tenerife a few weeks ago and caught the flu whilst there and have been so poorly, so take precautions and look after yourselves x

paddlin-maddlin in reply to Izb1

Thanks very much . It's interesting to hear what others think too.

maybe Azithromycin will help ?, I take 3 tabs per week and I am off southern Spain2 weeks

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