Domestic airlines change their policies on masking parameters

Published on : Wednesday, August 25, 2021


Some airlines are changing their policies on the parameters of an acceptable face mask.

This is for the prevention of the spread of COVID-19 on their flights.

Finland’s largest airline, Finnair, recently announced that passengers will no longer be allowed to wear fabric masks on flights.

Fabric masks are slightly less efficient in preventing infection than surgical masks.

 The airline now only accepts surgical masks, FFP2 or FFP3 respirator masks without a valve or other valve-free masks with the same standard (N95).

The Finnish air carrier is not alone in making such a distinction.

Air France prohibits passengers from wearing a cloth mask or one with an exhaust valve.

 Deutsche Lufthansa AG, aka Lufthansa Airlines, announced that cloth and face masks, masks with valves as well as scarves and handkerchiefs are not permitted either on board or in the lounges.

In the U.S., air carriers typically allow passengers to wear cloth face masks- but not face coverings like gaiters and bandanas.

Read on to learn what some domestic airlines now prohibit passengers from wearing to comply with the TSA mask mandate.

Domestic Airline Policies

American Airlines

American allows passengers to wear a mask or 2-layered secured cloth that completely covers your nose and mouth. The mask has to fit snugly to the sides of your face and under your chin.

The airline prohibits passengers from wearing a face shield with no mask, as well as balaclavas, bandanas, face covers with exhaust valves or vents, face covers made of mesh or lace, gaiters, scarves and ski masks.

Delta Airlines

Delta allows passengers to wear cloth masks with tightly woven fabric.

They also allow fabric masks with a clear plastic window. However, the airline prohibits any mask with an exhaust valve, masks with slits, punctures or holes.

However, bandanas, scarves, ski masks and balaclavas are not allowed.

Frontier Airlines

Frontier explains that passengers must wear a face covering that fits snugly over their nose and mouth and is secured under their chin.

Passengers cannot wear open-chin triangle bandanas, face coverings with vents, valves or mesh material and face shields alone.


JetBlue allows passengers to wear a plastic face shield in addition to a face mask but not in place of one.

The airline does not permit passengers to use personal face/body tents or pods, personal air purifiers/refreshers or ozone generators or any masks connected to tubing or battery-operated filters.

United Airlines

United Airlines recommends their passengers wear a face mask with no vents or openings that fully cover their nose and mouth.

They state that a face shield alone does not count as a face covering. They also do not permit wearing bandanas as a face covering.

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