A woman tested positive for COVID during a transatlantic flight and isolated for 5 hours in the plane bathroom

A woman tested positive for COVID during a transatlantic flight and isolated for 5 hours in the plane bathroom
An Icelandair Boeing 757.IanC66/Shutterstock.com
  • A schoolteacher from Michigan elected to self-isolate for five hours on long-haul flight.
  • Marisa Fotieo, a Michigan schoolteacher, took a rapid test after feeling early symptoms of the coronavirus.

A Michigan schoolteacher self-isolated in an airplane bathroom for about five hours after taking a COVID test mid-flight that came back positive.

"There's 150 people on the flight, and my biggest fear was giving it to them," Marisa Fotieo told NBC's "Today" show.

@marisaefotieo Shout out to @Icelandair for my VIP quarantine quarters.. #luxuryliving #imsolucky #covid #vaccinated #fyp #viralvideotiktok #quarantine ♬ I'm So Lucky Lucky - Grandzz

Fotieo took a rapid test after her throat began to hurt during a flight out of Chicago to Reykjavik, Iceland, on December 20.

"Within what felt like two seconds there were two lines," indicating a positive result, Fotieo told NBC.

She then self-isolated in the bathroom and documented the experience on TikTok. She said she stayed there for five hours, most of the duration of the roughly six-hour journey between the two cities.


Fotieo said that one of the Icelandair crew, a flight attendant called Ragnhildur "Rocky" Eiríksdóttir, made the experience a "VIP quarantine."

"She made sure I had everything I needed for the next five hours from food to drinks and constantly checked on me assuring me I would be all right," Fotieo told NBC.

Fotieo did not say how recently she had tested negative before flying.

Iceland requires a negative test taken within 72 hours of departure, which can be either a PCR or rapid test. A video Fotieo posted Friday suggests she took a PCR test that came back negative.

Eiríksdóttir's attention didn't end when the plane landed.


After Fotieo landed and was quarantined in a hotel in Reykjavik, she received a delivery from Eiríksdóttir, documented below.

@marisaefotieo UPDATE: We LOVE Rocky from @icelandair.is she makes the world a happier place #christmas #sunnyday #vaccinated #covid #quarantine #fyp #viralvideo ♬ Sunny Day - Ramol

"She bought me flowers and a little Christmas tree with lights so I could hang it," Fotieo told NBC. "It was so heartfelt, and she's just an angel."

The Christmas tree can be seen at the end of the video below.

@marisaefotieo I NEED IDEAS FOR ROCKY THE QUEEN FROM @icelandair.is #fyp #viralvideo #quarantine #viral #christmas #omicron #imsoluckylucky ♬ Forever Roses - Auracle

"We stan Rocky," Fotieo said in a TikTok video.

Icelandair did not comment on the event to NBC. Insider also contacted the airline for comment.


As of December 29, Fotieo was still posting from the quarantine hotel. Iceland mandates ten-day quarantines for people with COVID-19.