Jul 13, 2020

The Metropolitan Airports Commission (MAC) recently launched Travel Confidently, a robust health safety program to ensure the public can be confident when traveling through Minneapolis-St. Paul International Airport (MSP).

“Working with guidance from health agencies and best practices in the industry, we have adopted a comprehensive program to help keep travelers and airport employees healthy,” said MAC Chief Executive Officer Brian Ryks. “We’re expecting an increase in traffic in July. Whether our passengers return to the skies next month or later in the year, they will experience a very different airport in terms of health safety elements in place to protect them.”

The Travel Confidently program is a set of measures adopted over the last few months across the airport in partnership with airlines, concessionaires, the airport industry, federal agencies and others, to give travelers a safer experience on their journeys.

The MAC, which owns and operates MSP, also recently published a Travel Confidently Playbook that provides guidance for businesses and other organizations at MSP for protecting employees and travelers from COVID-19.
 
Keeping travelers safe begins, in part, with keeping airport employees safe so they do not contract or spread the virus at MSP. The Playbook builds on Travel Confidently and the steps it outlines to keep employees and travelers safe.

As an added safety measure, travelers at MSP also can now receive a free care kit containing a five-pack of face masks, hand sanitizer and a information card with some tips for flying safely. Ask for the kit at the airport’s information booths in the Airport Mall, in Ticketing and on Level T at Terminal 1, or at the information booth at Terminal 2 in bag claim.

The launch of Travel Confidently coincides with a July travel forecast that shows routes and passengers are returning to MSP.  More than a dozen domestic destinations have been added back to the MSP schedule in July, as average daily aircraft departures climb to 233, up from 138 in June but still down significantly from the daily average of 554 in July 2019.

A Travel Confidently messaging campaign is part of the program launch to help encourage travelers and visitors to take actions to protect their own health and that of those around them. The messaging emphasizes the importance of social distancing, face coverings and preventative hygiene.  Passengers and visitors will see the Travel Confidently messaging all along their airport journey as well as at www.mspairport.com.

Here is a summary of the new health and safety measures:

Cleaning:

  • The MAC is building on its top-ranked terminal and washroom cleanliness program (based on results from the Airports Council International Air Service Quality survey).
     
  • The MAC established a COVID-19 response team for cleaning and has increased frequency and thoroughness of cleaning in all public areas.
     
  • Focus continues on robust cleaning procedures in all high touch-point areas.
     
  • In June, the MAC instituted electrostatic disinfectant fogging overnight in public spaces of both terminals

 

Social Distancing: 

  • The MAC has adopted strict social distancing controls for its employees, as have airlines, retail shops and restaurants, aimed at keeping people six feet apart. 
  • Travel Confidently-branded floor decals and other signage are being placed in both terminals to remind everyone to maintain a six-foot distance whenever possible. 

 

Face Coverings: 

  • Minnesota Gov. Tim Walz issued an order on July 22 that requires face masks in indoor public areas, starting Saturday, July 25. That order includes the terminals at MSP International Airport.
  • The MAC requires its employees to wear face coverings whenever they are in public spaces at its airports and at other times when a six-foot distance is not possible to maintain. 

Hand Sanitizing Stations: 

  • The MAC has installed approximately 50 hand sanitizer stations throughout the terminals. More stations will be added as passenger activity increases. 

 

Shield Guards: 

  • The MAC has installed more than 130 shield guards throughout MSP Terminals at common-use ticket counters, gate desks, gate podiums, TSA checkpoints, information booths and other locations.  

Trip Planning: 

Pre-booked Parking: 

  • The MAC encourages travelers to pre-book parking. Through use of QR codes, pre-booked parking enables travelers to enjoy touchless entry and exit from MSP’s parking ramps.