Airlines Unmask; Other Passenger Transit Providers May Still Require Masks

After a federal judge struck down a nationwide mask requirement for airplanes (buses and trains, as well) on Monday, the country’s major airlines passenger stated they would stop requiring masks on flights, as has been practice for nearly two years.

How the airlines have responded:

  • Customers and employees could wear masks “at their own discretion” but would no longer be required to do so on domestic flights.
  • Employees and customers may make their own decision concerning their personal well-being vis a vis mask-wearing on its aircrafts.
  • Effective immediately, it would stop requiring masks from employees and customers, albeit they are suggesting that it may take a brief period of time for employees, customers and federal aviation agency employees and airport law enforcement personnel to fully comply with this change.
  • It would not require masks on domestic flights but would still require them on flights to countries with mask mandates.
  • It would allow its customers and employees to travel, mask-free.
  • Mask wearing will now be optional for tis customers and flight crews may still wear masks in terminals and on planes.
  • Masks will now be optional on domestic flights.
  • While it would stop requiring masks on its planes, some airports and cities it serves may still require masks. It urges passengers and employees to continue to wear masks in indoor settings.

From TIME:

What about airports?

Most U.S. airports have confirmed that they will no longer be enforcing mask requirements, but a handful of others are keeping mask mandates in place, including New York’s JFK and LaGuardia and Chicago’s O’Hare and Midway.


Like all the major U.S. airlines, Amtrak is not requiring passengers or employees to wear face masks on its trains or inside stations. “Masks are welcome and remain an important preventive measure against COVID-19,” the passenger rail service said in a statement on April 19. “Anyone needing or choosing to wear one is encouraged to do so.” Amtrak operates more than 300 trains per day.

Local transit

Commuter trains and subway policies vary across the country, but several regional railway systems are still requiring masks. Riders of the Metropolitan Transportation Authority in New York City (M.T.A., which operates the city’s subways and buses) as well as Los Angeles Metro and Chicago CTA, for instance, must wear masks while in transit.

Charter Buses

Greyhound, Megabus and Coach USA are no longer requiring face masks for passengers or employees.

Facial coverings must be worn on cross border trips into Canada and Mexico until their requirements are removed, Greyhound noted.

Ride sharing

Masks are now optional for riders and drivers on Uber and Lyft, the nation’s largest ride sharing platforms, except in New York City, where masks are required for taxis and for-hire vehicles.

Our best advice is to carry extra masks, just in case, and, as you gauge the situation you are in regarding your own personal comfort.

BNI Operatives; situationally aware.

As always, stay safe.