Can you board an aircraft in the US if you have covid?

I got a refund request that goes like this

My wife and child have COVID with major symptoms and the airline isn’t allowing them to board the plane

then another message says

Our son was taken to the hospital yesterday. We want to come there but the airline won’t let us board. There is nothing we can do

The guest and listing is in the USA. My understanding is that airlines are not checking for covid in the USA. Does anyone who has taken a flight recently know about this?

I don’t think so either, but I don’t know for sure. It doesn’t look like it from the internet.

What I do know is that Airbnb hasn’t acknowledged cancelations due to Covid in at least a couple of years. I also know that people who are booking flights right now don’t give a :poop: about Covid until it gets in the way of their travel plans. Additionally, life is uncertain but it’s highly unusual to be stuck at an airport for more than a day or two and that even CA is letting people with Covid get on airplanes…

All told, my estimation is that it doesn’t matter and isn’t your problem.

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They may not be doing any Covid testing, but if a person appears to be quite ill, no matter what they may have, they may not be allowed to board, just as passengers who appear to be inebriated may be refused boarding. He did say they had major symptoms, so they may have been coughing uncontrollably, obviously feverish, etc.
I would think an airline has the right, and possibly some legal responsibility to refuse boarding to someone who is obviously sick and may infect other passengers.
Then again, of course, he may be totally lying thinking he’ll get a refund.

In any case, it’s not really your problem. “I’m so sorry to hear that and wish your family a speedy recovery. Hopefully your travel insurance will cover any reimbursement for your travel bookings.”


Yes, it’s not my problem. I am only trying to figure out if the guest will actually show up or not. Based on his responses, there is a chance he is lying. He may very well show up. I’d like to re-rent the dates so I offered him a 20% refund of the total, so that he cancels and my calendar is unblocked.

I wouldn’t think a 20% refund would appease a guest who is lying and expected his lie to garner a full refund. Let us know how it shakes down.

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What are the time frames we’re talking about here? Next week stay? Airlines and cruise ships are playing the if-you’re-not-sick-you-can-go game. Also, the kid’s-in-the-hospital-and-the-airline-won’t… thing is like, wait what? Let your policy run the show.

Check in is this Sunday. Just trying to gauge the genuineness of the request.

I don’t refund but I would like to rerent the dates.

I’d try to enlist ABB CS (gasp!) and get THEM to cancel your guest with no refund. If you get short-notice bookings that’ll take care of itself.

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What irresponsible guests these are wanting to travel when they have Covid.

It’s irrelevant whether what they are saying is correct or not @house_plants

As you know Airbnb hasn’t offered penalty free cancellation because of Covid for a couple of years now so they they aren’t entitled to a refund (if you want to voluntarily refund them that’s another matter)

I’d be saying sorry you need to cancel and suggest they claim through their travel insurance.

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I fly frequently, both domestically (US) and internationally to the Caribbean. I haven’t had to confirm since sometime mid-2022 that I am COVID-free or at least free of COVID symptoms.

I highly suspect they are lying. Just say “oh, my, I do hope you all feel better soon! I’d be happy to send you documents you need for your travel insurance.”


This is accurate. And also some people are honest. My husband contracted Covid in Europe, contacted the airline, and American Airlines made him wait 14 days to board even though he was asymptomatic after 3 days.


Your husband is not only honest, he’s a responsible member of society. I have no words (well, only bad ones) for people who think nothing of exposing other people to their infectious diseases so as not to inconvenience themselves.


My wife and I got COVID at the end of our last cruise (mild). We just assumed we shouldn’t get on our flight. I would have thought the airlines would have a “If you have it, please don’t fly until you’re better” policy.
We rented a one-way car from Ft. Lauderdale to Atlanta, and all worked out OK.


Just flew yesterday and today, International and domestic. Absolutely no pre-boarding questions or other mention of COVID other than the flight attendants announcing on the plane “Masks aren’t required, but please respect others’ decisions to wear or not wear masks”.

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I was once on a flight with my son who was covered from head to toe with mosquito bites and they wanted to pull us off the flight. They thought he had chicken pox.

So I’m assuming if someone is coughing violently non stop the crew might deny boarding. I think it’s possible.

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I was once working in the staff kitchen at a Rennaissance fair when my middle daughter was about 8 and had chicken pox. I parked my van behind the staff kitchen and her friends were allowed to go in and play with her (they had already had chicken pox), but told her no way she was allowed to go out of the van and walk around. She may have no longer been contagious, but she still had chicken pox scabs and someone could have easily been outraged that I was working in the kitchen, even though I had had chicken pox as a kid, so couldn’t get it again or pass it on.

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But not a given. On a flight about a month ago, someone a few rows behind me was coughing non-stop for the first 20-30 minutes of the flight (until I put on my noise-cancelling headphones and could not hear them any longer)


I’m going on a boat trip this fall and I was asked about my vaccination status, were we “fully vaccinated?” I asked, well what is fully vaccinated these days? How many shots do you have to have…the original plus one booster, two boosters, what? The answer was the original dose and one booster. I wonder if that goal line will ever move, I for one, hope it does not.

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I ask my guests, as I have a homeshare, to confirm they have been Covid vaccinated. I’m well aware that they could still contract Covid, and infect others, but it’s an indication to me that they aren’t Covid deniers, anti-vaxers, and would be more likely to avoid high-risk situations, get tested if they had any symptoms, and be careful about exposing others if they did have symptoms.
And, as many people have had Covid, even if they were vaccinated and boosted, that is now being reported to provide pretty good immunity for awhile, at least for the variant they had.


REALLY sorry to do this but the admin email is not working -
I’m still unable to post my own posts but the regs state level 0 ‘you can’t edit your own posts’ suggesting I should be able to post!
Please advise how I post to ask a question. Many thanks, All, for your patience T