Guests travelling with Etihad Airways, the national carrier of the United Arab Emirates, from now until May 31 from Abu Dhabi to Chicago, New York, Washington and Toronto, will be the first to trial the IATA Travel Pass App to easily manage their travel health credentials.
Etihad Backs Digital Health Passport
Mohammad Al Bulooki, Chief Operating Officer, Etihad Aviation Group, said: “With the dynamically changing health requirements for travel, Etihad believes that a digital health passport solution will provide additional clarity and ease for travellers. Etihad has partnered with IATA so that together, a globally unified approach to a travel pass can be simplified to make travel easier once governments decide what regulations are required to cross borders in either direction.”
To participate in the trial, guests simply download the IATA Travel Pass app from the Apple App Store and book an appointment with Life Diagnostics at Sultan Bin Zayed the First Street or BioGenix Labs at Masdar City.
At the clinic, guests inform reception they are participating in the IATA Travel Pass trial and should be ready to show their passport and mobile device with the IATA Travel Pass app downloaded. Once the test result is ready, travellers will be able to view it on both the IATA Travel Pass app and through the testing clinic’s own digital platform.
Travel Pass to Build Confidence
“Etihad Airways trial of IATA Travel Pass will help build confidence among governments and travellers that digital health apps can safely, securely and conveniently help restart aviation. The app gives travellers a one-stop-shop to help them comply with the new rules for travel, and for governments complete assurance in the identity of the passenger and the authenticity of the travel credentials being presented,” said Nick Careen, IATA Senior Vice President for Airport, Passenger, Cargo and Security.
The IATA Travel Pass will enable Etihad’s guests to create a ‘digital passport’ to receive COVID test results and verify they are eligible to undertake their journey. Importantly, IATA Travel Pass will keep passengers in control of their data and facilitate the sharing of their test with airlines and authorities for travel. It will also make it convenient for passengers to manage travel documentation throughout their journey.
Guests participating in the IATA Travel Pass pilot will benefit from priority queue access at Life Diagnostics and Biogenix Labs for their PCR test, faster check-in at the airport and a free 90mb Wi-Fi voucher to use in-flight.
Guest who do not wish to participate in the trial can continue to follow the existing method of sharing PCR test results with Etihad by presenting a printed copy of their results at check in.
The IATA Travel Pass when put to use is poised to re-open borders without quarantine and restart aviation governments need to be confident that they are effectively mitigating the risk of importing COVID-19. This means having accurate information on passengers’ COVID-19 health status.
Informing passengers on what tests, vaccines and other measures they require prior to travel, details on where they can get tested and giving them the ability to share their tests and vaccination results in a verifiable, safe and privacy-protecting manner is the key to giving governments the confidence to open borders. To address this challenge IATA is working on launching the IATA Travel Pass, from May 1.
The IATA Travel Pass comprises of four modules:
- A global registry of health requirements to help you find accurate, updated information about travel, testing and vaccine requirements for your journey
- A global registry of testing/vaccination centres to help you find testing labs at your departure location and fulfill the requirements of your destination
- A Lab App that enables authorised labs and testing centres to share your test or vaccination certificate with you digitally
- A contactless travel app that helps you receive these certificates and share them with airlines and authorities as a verification of your health status. The app will also create a ‘digital passport’ for you and help you manage all your travel documentation digitally.
IATA Travel Pass – 20 Airline Trial
Singapore Airlines has successfully tested the pass on the London-Singapore route. Currently, over 20 airlines including Emirates, Qatar Airways, Malaysia Airlines, Japan Airlines, Etihad, Air New Zealand, Gulf Air, Air Baltic, Korean Air, Qantas and Virgin Atlantic are testing it.
The IATA Travel pass app will be available for download on Android and iOS in the second half of April and can be used by passengers travelling to Singapore via flights starting 1 May, 2021. There will also be paper-based alternatives for people who do not have mobile phones.