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Saturday, September 25, 2021

Explained: What is IATA’s travel pass, and why is it needed?

Digital passports like the IATA travel pass have been developed to provide governments with the means to verify the authenticity of tests or vaccinations and verify that a passenger meets the requirements for travel

Written by Pranav Mukul , Edited by Explained Desk | New Delhi |
Updated: August 20, 2021 7:28:00 am
The travel pass will be a mobile app that will help passengers manage their travel in line with government requirements for Covid-19 tests or vaccines. (Twitter/IATA)

After IndiGo, budget carrier SpiceJet will also start trials of IATA’s travel pass next week onwards. This means that starting August 23, passengers on SpiceJet’s Mumbai-Male flights would be able to use IATA’s travel pass to show their vaccination status.

What is IATA’s travel pass?

The travel pass will be a mobile app that will help passengers manage their travel in line with government requirements for Covid-19 tests or vaccines. The IATA Travel Pass will also enable authorised labs and test centres to securely send test results or vaccination certificates to passengers.

What is the need for such a service?

As international travel restarts in the aftermath of Covid-19, several jurisdictions are insisting on vaccination certificates, Covid19 RT-PCR tests and other health documents.

Digital passports like the IATA travel pass have been developed to provide governments with the means to verify the authenticity of tests or vaccinations, airlines with the ability to provide accurate information to their passengers on test requirements and verify that a passenger meets the requirements for travel and travellers with accurate information on test requirements, where they can get tested, and the means to securely convey their travel health credentials to airlines and border authorities.

Which other airlines have been onboarded to the IATA travel pass programme?

In addition to IndiGo and SpiceJet, global airlines such as Singapore Airlines, Qatar Airways, Emirates, Etihad, British Airways, Air France, Virgin Atlantic, Swiss Air, Thai Air, and several others have joined the IATA travel pass initiative.

Various pathological laboratories have also joined IATA’s travel pass network to provide test sites near international airports and main tourist destinations. In India, Apollo Hospitals has joined the network, and on Thursday SpiceJet announced its healthcare unit SpiceHealth has also been onboarded on to the IATA program.

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