Travel Update: Coronavirus (COVID-19)

At McGhee Tyson Airport (TYS), the safety and well-being of our passengers, guests, employees and tenants continues to be our highest priority. When preparing for your next visit to the airport, please use the following information to assist you:

PREPARING FOR YOUR FLIGHT – When preparing for your flight, consider the following information:

  • The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) continuously monitors travel and offers a wealth of information on their website. You can visit their website by clicking here.
  • Concerned about possible travel bans and/or restrictions? For the most current information, we encourage you to visit the CDC’s website regarding US travel. Multiple states and cities are requiring travelers from Tennessee to self-quarantine for 14-days upon arrival. We recommend contacting the Health Department in the city you are planning to visit to review their recommendations and requirements. Currently, the State of Tennessee does not require a 14-day self-quarantine upon arriving into the state. For international travel, please visit the US Department of State’s website where you can find travel information and advisories for the country you will be visiting.
  • Each airline serving our market has developed a complete listing of what is required to fly with them. To learn more about what is required by each airline and all of the things they are doing to keep their airplane clean, click on the links below:
    Allegiant Air
    American Airlines
    Delta Air Lines
    Frontier Airlines
    United Airlines
  • Not sure what to expect at the security checkpoint? Want to bring hand sanitizer or wipes in your carry-on luggage but are unsure if they will pass through security? Please visit the website of the Transportation Security Administration for details. 
  • Download your airline’s APP to reduce your touchpoints when in the airport, obtain your boarding pass electronically, and have access to real-time flight information.
  • Plan to arrive early to the airport. We suggest arriving at least 1.5 hours prior to a domestic departure and 2.5 hours prior to an international departure to prevent crowding caused by a last-minute rush before a flight.
  • Airport food and concessions are open and operating. In accordance with state requirements, their seating capacity may be limited.

FLIGHT INFORMATION – Prior to your arrival at the airport, please use one of the following to check the status of your flight:

ENHANCED CLEANING PROCEDURES – TYS will continue to comply with CDC prevention guidelines and has enhanced our established cold and flu season cleaning efforts with the following procedures:

  • Restrooms are cleaned hourly with multipurpose cleaner, degreaser and sanitizer.
  • No contact vapor sterilizers are used daily with hospital grade disinfectant.
  • We have increased cleaning of highly used areas of the terminal building where passengers and guests congregate. These areas include but are not limited to gate seating areas, lobby waiting area, elevators, escalators, etc.
  • Hand sanitizer dispensers are located in all airport restrooms, in gate areas and in baggage claim.

SAFETY MEASURES & RECOMMENDATIONS – TYS has implemented a multitude of safety measures throughout the airport for your safety including but not limited to:

  • Plexiglass Shields have been placed at airline and rental car counters, food and concession check-out locations, and other high traffic areas.
  • Social distancing markers and signage will provide guidance on six-foot physical distancing throughout the airport terminal building.  
  • TYS has reduced and reconfigured gate seating to promote distancing.
  • TYS highly encourages the use of face coverings or masks when in the airport terminal building.
  • At this time, guests are able to come inside the airport terminal building to greet their arriving passengers.

STAY UP TO DATE – Please use one or more of the following ways to stay up to date on changes at TYS:

  • Continue to visit this webpage.
  • Subscribe to the airport’s e-mail newsletter by emailing us at info@tys.org. 
  • Listen to the TYS podcast, From the Runway Up.

May 29, 2020
Effective June 1, 2020, Frontier Airlines will implement temperature screenings for all passengers and team members.

May 12, 2020
Delta Air Lines, United Airlines, Frontier Airlines and American Airlines require passengers to wear face coverings in terminal building areas and on flights. Allegiant Air will be providing Personal Health and Safety Kits to passengers as they board their airplane. The kits contain a single-use face mask, a pair of disposable non-latex gloves and cleaning wipes.

Effective June 1, 2020, Frontier Airlines will implement temperature screenings for all passengers and team members.

May 1, 2020
Delta Air Lines and United Airlines will begin requiring passengers to wear face coverings in terminal building areas and on flights beginning Monday, May 4, 2020. Frontier Airlines will implement this requirement on May 8, 2020, and American Airlines will begin on May 11, 2020.

April 30, 2020
McGhee Tyson Airport is open and operating flights that support our nation’s critical functions such as essential travel, supply delivery, and cargo operations. We are continuing to sanitize the airport using a variety of cleaning methods, with emphasis taken in restrooms and high traffic areas. We are committed to providing current travel information and airport operational updates when they become available.

April 8, 2020
The COVID-19 (Coronavirus) pandemic has had a major impact on flights into and out of McGhee Tyson Airport since mid-March. Our staff has been in constant communication with the airlines that serve our market in an effort to support their operations and to determine daily flight estimations for April 2020. As of today, we anticipate that the number of scheduled flights from McGhee Tyson Airport in April will be down 50% and that passenger numbers will be down 85%. We also anticipate that we will see flight cancellations each day. We are open and will continue to provide flights that support our nation’s critical functions such as essential travel, medical transportation, supply delivery, and cargo operations.

March 27, 2020
In compliance with Governor Bill Lee’s executive order to suspend in-person dining and due to low customer demand, airport concessionaires are offering carry-out food only, with a limited menu. They have reduced their hours of operation or closed temporarily. Food concessions are available each day from 5 a.m. to 6 p.m., with snack options available at the gift shop until 8 p.m. Please follow social distancing guidelines while waiting to pick up orders.

March 17, 2020
McGhee Tyson Airport is continuing their enhanced cleaning and sterilization measures throughout the terminal. Airport staff is working with state and local health departments as well as airport tenants to remain up to date on the latest COVID-19 information.  If you have any questions about your flight, it is strongly encouraged that you visit your airline’s website.

· Allegiant Air: www.allegiantair.com/travel-alerts
· American Airlines: https://www.aa.com/i18n/travel-info/travel-alerts.jsp
· Delta Air Lines: https://www.delta.com/us/en/advisories/other-alerts/coronavirus-travel-updates
· Frontier Airlines: https://www.flyfrontier.com/alert/
· United Airlines:  https://www.united.com/ual/en/us/fly/travel/notices.html

March 12,2020
The Knox County Health Department (KCHD) has notified McGhee Tyson Airport that a passenger flying into the airport was exposed to the COVID-19 coronavirus while overseas. The person has been in isolation since they returned to the area and has not required hospitalization. Per standard public health protocols for infectious disease response, KCHD epidemiologists are working with the Tennessee Department of Health and following CDC guidance to contact and monitor anyone who may have been exposed to this isolated case. More information is available at https://knoxcounty.org/health/coronavirus/.  

The Metropolitan Knoxville Airport Authority will continue to work closely with the KCHD and the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC). The airport will continue to comply with CDC prevention guidelines and has taken the following measures to supplement our established cold and flu season cleaning efforts:

  • Restrooms are cleaned hourly with multipurpose cleaner, degreaser and sanitizer.
  • No contact vapor sterilizers are used daily with hospital grade disinfectant.
  • Hand sanitizer is in all airport restrooms.
  • We have increased cleaning of highly used areas of the terminal building where passengers and guests congregate.
  • Airport employees and tenants have received the CDC’s prevention guidelines. A copy of these guidelines can be found on the CDC’s website.

The airlines that serve McGhee Tyson Airport have issued travel alerts pertaining to the coronavirus (COVID-19):

If you have a reservation question, please visit your airline’s website for specific instructions.

The best precautions you can take are simple, but they are important and effective:

 *   Wash your hands regularly
 *   Stay home if you are sick
 *   Avoid contact with those who are sick
 *   Cover your mouth and nose when you sneeze/cough
 *   Avoid touching your eyes, nose and mouth
 *   Get a flu shot if you haven’t already

The health and safety of our passengers, guests and employees is our top priority. Travelers are encouraged to visit any of the following websites for more information:

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