Don’t Touch Your Face

Don’t Touch Your Face: The Airline Industry Crashes

A worker disinfects a Vietnam Airlines plane amid concerns of the spread of the coronavirus at Noi Bai International Airport in Hanoi on March 3.
A worker disinfects a Vietnam Airlines plane amid concerns of the spread of the coronavirus at Noi Bai International Airport in Hanoi on March 3. NHAC NGUYEN/AFP via Getty Images

On today’s podcast: How airlines are responding to their biggest threat yet.

The coronavirus pandemic has already eclipsed the SARS outbreak, the 9/11 terrorist attacks, and the 2010 Icelandic ash cloud in terms of damage done to the airline industry. At least three airlines have collapsed, and in the United States this week, air travel was down 90 percent compared with last year,  according to the Transportation Security Administration.

Don’t Touch Your Face host Amy Mackinnon is joined by Jon Ostrower, the editor in chief of the Air Current, to discuss the crisis and how air travel as we know it could be changed for good. 

Further Reading:

Confusion among U.S. airlines as airplanes fly virtually empty to get bailout funds,” The Air  Current 

How coronavirus grounded the airline industry,” The Washington Post

About Don’t Touch Your Face:  On the last day of 2019, China reported an unusual outbreak in Wuhan, a port city with a population of 11 million. Within two months, the disease would spread to almost every continent on the globe and kill thousands of people. From Foreign Policy, a podcast about the extent of the COVID-19 contagion, the threat it poses, and what countries are doing to contain it. Join FP’s James Palmer and Amy Mackinnon as they track the spread of the virus and explore what it means for people’s everyday lives. Have a coronavirus question for us to explore? Email it to  See All Episodes

More Don’t Touch Your Face episodes:

Don’t Touch Your Face: What the AIDS Epidemic Tells Us About COVID-19

On our final episode (for now), we examine an older public health crisis and the lessons it offers.

Don’t Touch Your Face: Dating During Covid-19

On this week’s episode: How the pandemic is changing the way we meet people.

Don’t Touch Your Face: Pandemic Within a Pandemic

On this week’s episode: How the world may see more protests as lockdowns lift.

Other Foreign Policy podcasts:

I Spy

I Spy

Spies don’t talk—it’s the cardinal rule of the business. But here at Foreign Policy, we get them to open up. On I Spy, we hear from the operations people: the spies who steal secrets, who kill adversaries, who turn agents into double agents. Each episode features one spy telling the story of one operation.

Want swag? Check out I Spy's limited edition merchandise by clicking here. Preorders available through Sept. 29.



First Person

Each week, one guest whose experience illuminates something timely and important about our world.