Etihad begins IATA ‘Covid passport’ trial on flights to North America

Abu Dhabi - Guests participating in the pilot will benefit from priority PCR tests, faster check-in, and free 90mb WiFi voucher.

By Waheed Abbas

Published: Tue 20 Apr 2021, 2:56 PM

Last updated: Tue 20 Apr 2021, 3:05 PM

Etihad Airways on Tuesday rolled out the IATA Travel Pass app for its passengers travelling from Abu Dhabi to Chicago, New York, Washington and Toronto. Dubbed ‘digital Covid passport’, the app manages and compiles passengers’ health credentials — from test results to vaccination records — to ensure safe, convenient travel.

Etihad’s IATA Travel Pass trial will run until May 31. Emirates airline is carrying out the same trial, which started last Thursday.


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The International Air Transport Association (IATA) Travel Pass will enable Etihad’s guests to keep a digital record of their Covid test results and easily verify if they are eligible for an upcoming trip. It also allows them to directly share the required health documents with airlines and authorities.

How to participate

To participate in the trial, passengers need to download the IATA Travel Pass app and book an appointment with Life Diagnostics at the Sultan Bin Zayed the First Street or BioGenix Labs at Masdar City. At the clinic, guests will have to inform the reception that they are participating in the trial and should be ready to show their passport and mobile device with the app.

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.

“With the dynamically changing health requirements for travel, Etihad believes that a digital health passport solution will provide additional clarity and ease for travellers,” said Mohammad Al Bulooki, chief operating officer of the Etihad Aviation Group.

“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, senior vice-president for airport, passenger, cargo and security at IATA.

Is the IATA Travel Pass mandatory?

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 in-flight WiFi voucher . Guest who do not wish to participate in the trial may continue to follow the existing method of sharing PCR test results with Etihad by presenting a printed copy of their results at check in.

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