In November 2020, I reported that American Airlines was testing an app called VeriFLy that was designed to streamline the process of identifying and complying with requirements for international travel. This so-called “health passport” passed the testing phase and becomes operational on January 23, 2021. Beginning Tuesday, January 26, all air passengers ages two and older must show proof of a negative Covid-19 test to enter the United States. ,
The VeriFLY app is developed and managed by Daon, a biometric authentication and identity assurance solutions provider. VeriFLY offers travelers a secure and easy way to confirm their destination’s COVID-19 requirements.
Download the VeriFLY app from the iOS App Store or Google Play Store, create an account, enter the destination, and upload required documentation such as proof of a negative COVID-19 test. The app verifies that the customer’s data matches a country’s requirements and displays a simple pass or fail message. This streamlines check-in and documentation verification at the airport before departure. The app also provides travelers with helpful reminders when their travel window is coming to a close or once their credential has expired.
VeriFLY is already available for use for travel on American from the U.S. to several countries including Jamaica, Chile, Colombia, El Salvador, Guatemala and Honduras.
Other airlines will also be implementing their versions of digital health passports to make identifying and complying with evolving restrictions on international travel due to Covid-19.
Etihad Airways and Emirates became the first airlines to test the International Air Transport Association’s Travel Pass, a mobile app that will generate QR codes to share relevant information with authorities. Authorized labs and test centers will also be able to securely send medical information directly to passengers.
Etihad will launch a trial program during the first quarter of 2021 on flights from Abu Dhabi. Emirates expects to launch the app in April on flights out of Dubai.
Travel Pass will validate COVID-19 PCR tests before departure. Passengers will be able to share their test status before arriving at the airport and the app will then auto-populate their details in the check-in system.
As the pandemic evolves and vaccines become available, countries and their health authorities are issuing varying and detailed entry requirements. Apps that airlines are developing will be extremely helpful in letting travelers know what requirements are in effect and if they have satisfied those requirements for entry.
Have you taken any international flights during the pandemic? Was it difficult to comply with Covid-19 restrictions at your destination?