BA & Jet2 join Ryanair & easyJet in keeping masks mandatory on planes after July 19

BRITISH AIRWAYS and Jet2 have joined easyJet and Ryanair in making face masks mandatory after July 19. 

Boris Johnson yesterday announced a wealth of new freedoms Brits will be able to enjoy from July 19, including the news that compulsory face masks will be scrapped. 

However, businesses will be able to set conditions for their premises and as a result, the UK’s biggest airlines have declared that travellers will still have to mask up in planes. 

Ryanair said in a statement yesterday: "In order to protect the health of our customers and crew, the use of face masks will still be mandatory across all Ryanair flights, regardless of the departing/destination country."

EasyJet swiftly followed suit, indicating that it has no plans to drop its requirement for passengers to wear face coverings.

The airline said in a statement to PA: "At present there are no changes to easyJet's onboard mask policy and we will continue to keep this under review.

"We continue to be guided by our inhouse medical adviser and a number of key industry governing bodies that airlines follow including the WHO , Icao, Easa, the European Centre for Disease Prevention and Control and public health authorities across Europe, and at present their guidance around the wearing of masks onboard remains unchanged."

Following the Prime Minister’s announcement yesterday, Jet2 and BA also revealed they would maintain mask-wearing onboard flights. 

From July 19, Brits will no longer receive a fine if they don’t wear a face covering on public transport. 

Commuters will still be encouraged to wear a mask while on a bus or train – but this will not be legally enforced. 

Under current guidance, Brits face fines of up to £6,400 if they don’t wear a face covering on public transport – unless they are medically exempt. 

A first offence carries a fine of £200, reduced to £100 if paid within 14 days. The penalty doubles for repeat offences up to a maximum of £6,400.But ministers will shift the emphasis onto personal responsibility rather than state-enforced rules as the nation emerges from the pandemic.

Boris Johnson said he would wear a mask in crowded places full of strangers but suggested he would not on an empty train carriage late at night.

The PM told the Downing Street press conference: "I will obviously wear a mask in crowded places where you are meeting people that you don't know, as Chris (Whitty) was saying, to protect others and as a matter of simple courtesy.

"There's a difference between that, and I think everyone can understand that, and circumstances where you might find yourselves sitting alone for hours late at night on a train with no one else in the compartment and there I think people should be entitled to exercise some discretion."

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