TSA expected to extend mask requirement for air travel through much of the summer

Passengers, almost all wearing face masks, board an American Airlines flight to Charlotte, on May 3, 2020, in New York City.

Eleonore Sens | AFP | Getty Images

The Transportation Security Administration is expected to extend a requirement that air travelers wear masks in airports and during flights for several more months, people familiar with the matter said.

An announcement could come as early as Friday and could extend the requirement, which had been set to expire May 11, until mid-September, the people said.

The TSA didn’t immediately comment.

The agency started requiring people wear masks in airports and during flights on Feb. 2, following an order from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. Airlines have required passengers wear masks for much of the past year as Covid-19 continued to spread. Carriers have banned more than 2,000 passengers for failing to follow mask requirements.

About half of U.S. adults are at least partially vaccinated, according to federal data. Airline executives have reported higher bookings since vaccines have rolled out and more tourist attractions reopen.

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