Qantas is working with the Australian government on getting an exemption from social-distancing rules on its aircraft when the carrier resumes domestic flights.
The Australian carrier suspended domestic flights until the end of June, but it said this month that easing government restrictions suggests some domestic travel may return before the end of July.
Chief executive Alan Joyce told ABC News on Monday that he hopes that the Government would not require seats to remain empty. "Even if you take the middle seat as being empty, that's 60cm. The social distancing rules are supposed to be 1.5m," Joyce told the programme.
Some US domestic carriers have left the middle seat empty between passenger, which reduces capacity and raises their running costs.
"If you did that, you'd have very few people on an aircraft and airfares would have to be very high," Joyce warned.
Joyce added that the Government was happy with the national airline's repatriation flights from India to Australia having all the seats filled.
"We just need to get those practices that are on those charter flights into the domestic operation," Joyce said.
Joyce cited a lack of evidence over mid-air person-to-person transmission, and said "no conclusions have been reached" with the Federal Government.
"There's been no known transmission of Covid-19 passenger to passenger or passenger to crew, and there's huge tracking been done on that in this country," Joyce said.
"We have the protections of how we clean aircraft, and if we put other protections in place, we think we can make a case and to make that absolutely secure and give people confidence that it's very safe to travel."
Air New Zealand will begin flying domestic routes from alert level 2, but warns fares will be higher because of social distancing restrictions.
"One-metre social distancing means we can only sell just under 50 per cent of seats on a turboprop aircraft and just 65 per cent on an A320. On that basis, to ensure we cover our operating costs, we won't be able to offer our lowest lead-in fares until social distancing measures are removed," chief executive Greg Foran said.
Qantas' announcement comes after reports on what the transtasman bubble may look like and what health protocols may look like for airlines.
Last week, the Australia New Zealand Leadership Forum (ANZLF) created an expert panel, the Transtasman Safe Border Group.
It includes representatives from Border Force, health authorities, quarantine authorities, airlines and airports.
The panel will spend three to four weeks discussing protocols that will be passed on to both governments.
Forum chairwoman Ann Sherry said tourists may face pre-travel health checks and on-arrival health checks, including temperature readings.
Touchless immigration checks could be done electronically, without forms or documents to ensure no transferring of germs.
A "checker-board" style seating pattern on planes could also achieve social distancing as no one would be directly in front of or behind another passenger.
"Some of the things that will be done will be about public confidence," Sherry said.
"While temperature testing is an imperfect way of knowing if people are unwell, it's at least a screen."