In the Air Again – Business Travel

'In the Air Again' is a series of first-hand accounts from people travelling through YWG during the COVID-19 pandemic. This story features the journey of business traveller Tony Poirier.

There’s definitely a different feeling at Winnipeg Richardson International Airport these days. It’s not as vibrant. You’re used to seeing people talking, working on computers or chatting on their phones. The coffee shops and restaurants in the terminal aren’t open. It’s a lot quieter than before but just as safe.

I’m at the airport every week. I mainly travel to and from Calgary for work but because of how safe I feel while flying, I’ve also taken a few trips for fun. I actually feel safer in an airport or plane these days than in a grocery store. The mandatory mask requirements make me feel extremely comfortable plus people are respecting and enforcing the rules more. There are also a lot of hand sanitizer stations available for you to use and the airport is constantly being cleaned.

For me, it’s about smelling clean. If it smells clean, you know it’s been recently sanitized. I definitely get that feeling at Winnipeg’s airport or on the plane. While waiting for your flight, you notice the cleaners going from gate to gate to wipe things down. The airlines have also done a great job of cleaning their planes in between flights.

The first time I decided to travel during COVID-19, the airport was empty. There was nobody going through it. That’s changed a bit since then. It’s still relatively slow. You can walk straight up to security and there are no line ups anywhere in the terminal but the planes are decently full leaving Winnipeg. The last few flights I took, the plane was about 75% or more full. I think people are getting more confident when it comes to flying. They’re finding ways to travel whether it’s for work or pleasure. They want that feeling of normal back.

There are plenty of opportunities right now to travel. Go see the mountains, go see a new Canadian city or go see Churchill. There’s no better year to visit those places. Discover your country and all the great things it has to offer.

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