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United CEO: My guess is airline mask mandate will expire in September

Date: July 11, 2021

By Joseph Choi, The Hill

United Airlines CEO Scott Kirby on Sunday predicted that the mask mandate for airline passengers will be allowed to expire in September.

In April, the Transportation Security Administration (TSA) extended its mask order until September 13 for airports, airplanes, buses and railways.

Appearing on CBS's "Face the Nation" on Sunday, Kirby told host John Dickerson, "My guess is that the current government order expires on September 13 and fingers crossed. My guess is it will expire on September 13, but we'll wait and see for sure."

Kirby stated that personal travel has rebounded and leisure travel has "more than 100 percent recovered."

The airline CEO also said he expects European travel to "come back largely in full" the moment that borders are fully reopened, while travel in Asia will likely take "18 to 24" months to fully recover.

He noted, however, that business demands for travel are still far from being fully recovered.

Dickerson asked when business travel would get back to "normal."

"I don't think anything will be normal on the other side of this, but we expect that business demand is really going to pick up in September, mostly [when] the schools are back in, a lot of people are back in offices. But we don't think it really recovers in full until 2023," Kirby replied.

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