Hanoi (VNA) – An electronic health certification application allows Governments to be confident that passengers have met health requirements, and helps standardise the control process globally. The International Air Transport Association (IATA) believes the coming into being of their IATA Travel Pass will strongly drive air travel demand globally.
Integrating COVID-19 safety certifications
The IATA Travel Pass is a mobile app that allows travellers to store and manage certifications for COVID-19 tests or vaccines. The app has been available in iOS and Android stores.
The information provided through the IATA Travel Pass can be used by governments requiring testing or vaccination proof as a condition of international travel during and after the COVID-19 pandemic. It is a secure means to manage health requirements and much more efficient than paper processes.
The app consists of four modules – a global registry of health requirements, a global registry of testing centres, a lab app to securely share test and vaccination certificates with passengers, and a contactless travel app that enables passengers to create a digital passport and manage their travel documentation digitally.
At all times, travellers remain in control of their data with their privacy protected as the IATA Travel Pass does not store any data centrally.
Before making a flight, passengers download the IATA Travel Pass application, fill in information, and take a COVID-19 test at designated facilities. They will receive an “OK to Travel” if their travel health credentials meet the destination’s requirements.
It has so far received positive feedback from governments of 70 countries and applied by more than 20 airlines, including Singapore Airlines, Qatar Airlines, All Nippon Airways, Etihad, Emirates, Korean Air, Virgin Atlantic, and Ethiopian.
According to an IATA survey of 4,700 people in 11 countries, 89 percent of respondents supported a globally standardised COVID-19 test or vaccination certificate, while 84 percent wanted a globally recognised smartphone app to manage health credentials while traveling by air.
Peter Cerdá, IATA Regional Vice President for the Americas said IATA Travel Pass gives Governments the confidence that passengers to their nations have met health requirements and formalizes the control process globally. It also simplifies the passenger experience and helps travel recover quickly, he added.
A convenient solution for global citizens
The Kuwait-based Jazeera Airways, which is testing the IATA Travel Pass , has conducted a survey on the importance of contactless procedures for passengers during the pandemic. Over 90 percent of respondents said they would prefer to use self-check-in alternatives, mobile boarding passes and e-gates when traveling.
Rohit Ramachandran, CEO Jazeera Airways, considered the app a global solution to enable citizens and residents to travel safely.
Vietnamese budget airline Vietjet Air will participate in trialling the IATA Travel Pass in June.
“Vietjet is one of the first airlines in the world to trial IATA Travel Pass. Vietjet strongly believes that with IATA Travel Pass, our passengers will get the best experience on their upcoming travels,” said Vietjet Managing Director Dinh Viet Phuong.
“We look forward to working with Vietjet to trial IATA Travel Pass and demonstrate that digital health apps can securely, conveniently and efficiently help manage passenger travel health credentials. This is a positive step forward towards restarting international aviation,” said Nick Careen, IATA’s Senior Vice President for Airport, Passenger, Cargo, Security.
The IATA Travel Pass team has been working closely with Vietjet – an IATA member, and the relevant Vietnamese authorities, as well as with other IATA members and governments to ensure the product could support and facilitate safe international travel.
In order to facilitate the application of “vaccine passport” in travelling, countries should recognise each other’s certificates in a comprehensive and synchronous manner in terms of language, data and information security.
According to the Civil Aviation Authority of Vietnam, Vietnam has yet to issue legal regulations related to the application of the “vaccine passport” as well as government and ministry-level agreements with other countries to enable the application for foreigners.
Earlier, addressing the launching ceremony of the COVID-19 vaccination campaign in Vietnam, Health Minister Nguyen Thanh Long said that the vaccination system of Vietnam will be connected with the systems in other countries and expanded to link with the “vaccine passport” in the future with the whole management system using QR code. Those who are vaccinated against COVID-19 will receive certificates and have their information updated in their electronic personal health records./.