Qantas CEO Alan Joyce calls for mask mandate to be lifted on planes

Qantas chief executive Alan Joyce has called for one of the last remaining Covid-19 rules to be scrapped in line with international standards.

As yet another Covid-19 rule is scrapped for Australian travellers, Qantas chief executive Alan Joyce is calling for the federal government to meet international standards and scrap the mask mandate on planes.

As of Friday, masks are no longer required at Australian airports, but the mandate remains for on planes.

“It probably should have been removed some time ago,” Mr Joyce told 2GB radio host Ben Fordham on Friday morning.

Masks requirements change depending on the rules in the country of the flight’s destination.

Travellers flying from Sydney to Perth are required to wear a mask, while flights leaving from Perth to London are not.

“We are a little behind the curve on this, we do need to move on it,” Mr Joyce said.

He said there was significant evidence to prove that there was a very low risk of transmitting Covid-19 on a plane due to air filtration techniques.

“An aircraft is the safest environment of any transport in the world,” he said.

“You’ve got these HEPA filters on an aircraft that take out 99 per cent of all particles, including Covid-19.

“You’ve got air that’s circulated every six minutes and you’ve got everyone facing in a forward direction.”

Mr Joyce cited a Boeing study that showed sitting next to someone who coughs on a plane had the same effect as sitting two metres away from them on the ground.

The airline boss is hoping that the new Albanese government will move quickly to bring Australia up to international standards on mask mandates.

“We’ve had a change of government … we’re hoping to make progress pretty soon,” he said.

Originally published as Qantas CEO Alan Joyce: Australia ‘behind the curve’ on Covid rule

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