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Flying with a hot air balloon in Cappadocia during the pandemic time

Flying with a hot air balloon in Cappadocia during the pandemic time
Flying with a hot air balloon in Cappadocia during the pandemic time27.08.2020

As the suspension of hot air balloon flights lifted in Cappadocia on 22nd August, tourists have again started travelling to Cappadocia to fulfil their dream of balloon flight. Balloon companies have already commenced adapting the way they fly to new normal. 

All balloons flights had been suspended for more than five months in Turkey. The skies of Cappadocia had never been this quiet and colourless. With the reopening of Turkey's borders to international tourism, The Civil Aviation Authority of Turkey made a surprise decision on 20th August 2020, lifting the restrictions of balloon flights. It was announced that balloon operators can resume their operations by the 22nd of August. 

However, balloon operators are allowed to return to air only if they adapt their operations to rules specified in the safe flying guideline issued by the Civil Aviation Authority of Turkey, which requires the operators to take preventive measures against the novel Covid-19 virus. To minimise the risk of virus transmission on board, the Civil Aviation Authority of Turkey introduced new strict regulations to be implemented during the entire balloon flight operations.

Some of these regulations are as follows: 

1) In order to maintain social distance onboard, hot air balloons must be set to fly low capacity, thereby increasing the minimum space per passenger.
2) Passengers are required to wear a mask on board.
3) In order to avoid face-to-face interaction, passengers must be advised to adopt an outward-facing position during the flight. 
4) All touchpoints on the basket must daily be cleaned after every flight as part of the operator's cleaning program.
5) Temperature checks for all crew and passengers must be implemented daily before every flight. If any crewmember or passenger has a temperature of 37.5°C or higher, they will not be permitted to fly. 
6) Balloon operators are monthly required to test all flight crew for COVID-19. 
7) Family members, friend groups and couples must be allocated in the same compartment.

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  • balloon flights started
  • suspension of balloon flights