Feds Extend Mask Mandate on Planes, Airports into 2022
federal mask mandate

Feds Extend Mask Mandate on Planes, Airports into 2022

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You’ll have to keep your mask on for your flight for longer – much longer.

The federal mask mandate on planes, in airports, and on other forms of public transportation has been extended all the way through January 18, 2022, the Transportation Security Administration (TSA) confirmed after a Reuters breaking news story.

After being a matter of airline policy from near the start of the pandemic, President Joe Biden made it a federal requirement through executive order on his first day in office in January. It had been set to lapse Sept. 14 after the last extension in the spring.

There had been hope among airlines, travelers, and even Congress that masking requirements would end after the busy summer travel season – if not sooner. Mask requirements have become a major flashpoint in the skies, helping fuel a drastic surge in unruly passengers and a zero-tolerance crackdown from the Federal Aviation Administration.

But the fast-spreading Delta variant has clearly changed the calculus, driving another wave of COVID-19 cases, hospitalizations, and deaths across the country. Daily COVID-19 cases are at their highest point in the U.S. since January. Major U.S. airlines were briefed Tuesday on the brewing announcement that the federal mask mandate would be extended until mid-January 2022, Reuters reports.

federal mask mandate 

An extension means that all travelers will continue to be required to wear masks in airports, on airplanes, and on other forms of public transport through the Thanksgiving and winter holiday season. It will now last through Jan. 18, 2022.

It’s not the first action on masks since the Delta variant’s emergence. Last month, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) reversed course and again recommended wearing masks in areas of high COVID-19 transmission.

While transmission on planes is fairly low thanks to hospital-grade filtration systems, public health officials have said that masks are critical in preventing further spread of COVID-19 through travel. Plus, there’s much more to travel than simply sitting on a plane.

“Masks are really powerful and we should make sure they’re part of our arsenal,” the CDC’s Marty Cetron previously said. “The truth is that the unvaccinated portion that’s out there is extremely vulnerable.”


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9 Responses

  • We are treated like the world around us is a hospital floor and everyone is sick! STOP this nonsense and the fear mongering! This is outrageous to decide over our health with a virus that is 99.95% survivable!!!!!!

    • Exactly! Well said. It’s proven that masks don’t stop the particulate size of Covid anyway. It can travel either through the mask or around the sides. Think of a wall made of chain link fence representing your mask and a gnat as Covid. The Govt doesn’t get it. They just want fear and control.

  • I think that all who voted for the current president should be required to wear masks for the rest of their lives!

  • Ha so much for following the science. MNs very own Dr. Michael Osterholm, a top Biden COVID official, admitted on CNN only a few weeks ago that cloth masks are ineffective and dont work. Our gov. says one thing and does another, one might call that lying. Whatever, we get what we vote for I guess [insert trash emoji]. What an absolute joke

  • You are wildly selfish and what an ignorant comment. You are ok with ~80million fatalities at your commented 99% survivability rate? All for the the minor inconvenience of having to wear a mask while packed in a little metal tube for a few hours. The same little metal tube that further enables you to spread your ignorance even further afield….

    • I would gladly wear a mask if it helped. It doesn’t. In fact it is the opposite. It suppresses the immune system. And a good strong immune system is our best defense.

  • Delighted to hear about the the mask mandate extension before my first pandemic airplane trip (to Hawaii) in Oct!
    It never fails to surprise me how many ways some people find to stick their heads in the sand and ignore the science and accurate information out there. Really strange how the communities with the lowest rates of vaccinated people and no mask mandates have the highest rates of infection and full hospitals. Go figure!
    Thanks goodness I live in a county that is has 70% of eligible people fully vaccinated and even higher in my city!

  • I am assuming that all the mask objectors also are vaccination “hesitant “.
    You, as a group, are responsible for the death toll we are all experiencing…..perhaps you need a parent or child to succumb to believe the real facts.
    I, for one, just wish you would get sick and die already so we can get to herd immunity….you are extending the misery for the rest of us.

    • Sir Steve, youre only causing yourself to be miserable with comments like that wishing death upon people. Unfortunately for you, most people who choose not to be vaccinated likely live healthy lifestyles and will experience COVID with little to no symptoms. By your logic, anyone who smokes should be put to death because 2nd hand smoke can be deadly for those around them. Start the purge!

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