We took an Edinburgh bus journey to see if people were still wearing face masks

As most of you probably know, today, Monday April 18, is the day that the legal requirement in Scotland to wear a face covering has been dropped.

For most of the Covid pandemic, it has been the law to wear a mask in most indoor areas, as well as on public transport with a whole host of other rules regarding the number of people attending certain events also put in place.

To the delight of many Scottish individuals, traveling on the bus, or nipping into the shops are among social outings where wearing a mask is no longer needed, although people are being advised to still wear one in most public settings.

READ MORE: Nicola Sturgeon ‘spoken to’ by Police Scotland after being pictured without a mask

Expectedly, many people will still be anxious surrounding the effects of the virus and will be more than happy to continue wearing a face covering to protect themselves, and others.

To get some early insight into how many people have already ditched their mask on public transport, I hopped on a bus from one end of the city to the other, to see if there was already an overwhelming response to the news.

Taking into consideration the time of day and the fact that many people were off work due to it being Easter Monday, the bus was fairly quiet from start to finish.



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I started on the Western Approach Road, near Princes Street, and boarded the service 30 to the Wester Hailes area. I had already jumped on the bus on the way to work in the morning though so I already had an idea of ​​the comparison between peak time, and off-peak.

From the off, I counted about 15 people on the single-decker bus, with a fair mix of young and older travelers.

Of the 15 seated on the bus when I got on, seven were not wearing a mask, and the remaining eight were. Although it was not overly busy, it was a decent marker for how things may develop in the coming days and weeks.

Several others people got on and off the bus, with all of those getting on, wearing a face covering.

On the return leg, the situation was very similar. There were a few more people on the bus, I counted 17 when I first got on, many of whom got off within a few stops.

Of the initial 17, ten were not wearing masks, and the remaining seven were.

However, while getting the extremely busy service 26 in the morning to the city center, the majority of people were all wearing face coverings.

This suggests that although the legal requirement to do so is no longer valid, people are putting their health first and not taking any risks for a small 10-20 minute commute.

The early evidence also seems to suggest that people are more inclined to wear a face covering during the busier spells of the day.

I have to sit next to a passenger on the bus during the morning, perhaps meaning people are more likely to wear a face covering when there are more people around them and the risk of catching Covid is much greater.

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