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Airline Industry Travel Pass Is Expected To Be Ready In Next Few Weeks

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Due to the pandemic, traveling has become a much more complicated affair than it once was. With the constant changing of restrictions, requirements and border closures, it can be hard for travelers to know what they need, and where it is needed for. However, one such innovation has been designed with ease of travel in mind – and it’s not far away from becoming a reality.

Travel passes are seen as the key the reopening the world of travel for the masses – find out all about the IATA’s travel pass that could be available for passengers as early as next month.

Airline Industry Travel Pass Is Expected To Be Ready In Next Few Weeks

What Is The IATA Travel Pass? A Reminder For Travelers

The International Air Transport Association (IATA) has created a travel pass designed to make travel easier for passengers in the current global situation, where information can be outdated or inconclusive. The travel pass will be supplied in the form of an app, available on both Android and Apple devices, and is expected to be free to download.

man mask plane phone

Seen as a potential solution to resuming international travel, the travel pass can help passengers in the following ways:

  • Enables passengers to find information on travel, testing and vaccine requirements for their journey
  • Enables passengers to find information on travel, testing and vaccine requirements for their journey
  • Enables authorized labs and test centers to securely send test results or vaccination certificates to passengers
  • Enables passengers to (1) create a ‘digital passport', (2) verify their test/vaccination meets the regulations & (3) shares test or vaccination certificates with authorities to facilitate travel.
  • Can be used by travelers to manage travel documentation digitally and seamlessly throughout the travel experience.
airport mask phone

There have been several other attempts to create travel passes by other companies, but the IATA travel pass has already been trialed by several airlines. Etihad and Emirates, the national carriers of the UAE, began trialing the system on selected flights last month.

woman airport mask phone

The IATA’s travel pass is designed to be modular, which means that other such travel pass solutions can use parts of the IATA travel pass in their offering. IATA has reassured travelers that the app will not store data, and that none of the information will go to an airline without the authorization of the user.

phone plane

IATA Travel Pass Close – What Travelers Should Know

Already months in the making, the IATA has revealed that it expects its travel pass to be ready “within weeks”, meaning that it should be widely available by the time countries around the world have increased their vaccinations and began easing restrictions and permitting international travel once more.

Air New Zealand plane takeoff

“We are currently working with a number of airlines worldwide and learning from these pilots. And the plan is to go live in March,” announced IATA’s regional director of airports and external relations Vinoop Goel. The app is currently being tested by a series of airlines, such as Etihad, Qatar Airways and Air New Zealand, and the IATA is also in talks with airlines in the Asia Pacific region.

Etihad Plane

Goel also expressed that the key issue is one of confidence. “Passengers need to be confident that the testing they've taken is accurate and will allow them to enter the country. And then governments need to have the confidence that the tests that the passengers claim to have is one which is accurate and meets their own conditions.” A solidly-built, well-tested travel pass is sure to build confidence, which will in turn to lead to a return to travel as we once knew it.

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Opinions expressed here are the author’s alone, not those of any bank, credit card issuer, hotel, airline, or other entity. This content has not been reviewed, approved or otherwise endorsed by any of the entities included within the post.


Tuesday 23rd of February 2021

I assume this “travel pass” is optional.

Stephen White

Wednesday 24th of February 2021

@Christian, Traveling is optional. We'll see whether these travel passes are widely adopted and become de facto compulsory or not.