Many airlines now requiring passengers to wear masks

Big changes are underway at major United States airlines in an effort to stem the spread of the coronavirus.

A lot of people aren't flying right now, but if you do have plans to travel, be aware that starting Monday, on many airlines, customers will be required to wear face coverings on board.

Every major US airline is requiring passengers to cover their noses and mouths.

From the check-in lobby to the boarding gate areas, lounges, jet bridges, and for the duration of the flight - except when meals are served - face coverings must be worn. Travelers are strongly encouraged to cover their faces in restrooms and security lines.

"You hear from Delta and American and other airlines, talking about how they're going the extra mile on safety and hygiene and cleanliness," said Scott Keyes, founder of Scott's Cheap Flights.com.

Many airlines had already announced they are limiting capacity on flights and blocking out the middle seat to help travelers social distance.

Companies are also asking passengers to bring their own face coverings but said they will give masks to those who need them.

JetBlue, Delta, and United Airlines' face-covering mandate started Monday. Frontier and Hawaiian Airlines will be required to do so starting May 8, and American, Spirit, Southwest, and Alaska Airlines will implement the policy starting May 11.

"Everybody's health and safety are paramount during a public health emergency like this," said Keyes.

Children and people with disabilities or medical conditions who can't wear a face covering or put them on or take them off independently are exempt.

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