Travel and tourism, both struck hard and bad in the past year or so, are undeniably important elements of the economy. The recovery of the aviation industry will probably lead the way for economic improvement. Governments globally are working day and night seeking ways to resume international travel. Safe and secure international travel that is. Figuring out ways for passengers to share critical health information, such as negative PCR test results and vaccination history with authorities, has indeed become a top priority.
Travel technology companies and airlines around the globe have been working on developing so called “digital health passports”, to enable passengers to share COVID-19 PCR test results or COVID-19 vaccination history with authorities, to comply with the health requirements for travel these days. As of January 26, a negative COVID-19 test became a mandatory requirement for travel in the US.
Health Protect is a group of digital industry solutions developed to help airlines, airports, governments, and passengers safely share information on health tests and vaccinations needed for international travel. Much needed in the COVID-19 era!
Health Protect includes a group of digital solutions: SITA Health Electronic Travel Authorization (ETA), SITA Advanced Passenger Processing (APP), and SITA Flex for in-airport passenger flow monitoring.
To ensure that governments make knowledgeable decisions on who to authorize to travel, fully aware of who intends to travel and their health status, integrating SITA’s Advanced Passenger Processing (APP) with an existing health-pass system comes of great assistance. SITA’s Advanced Passenger Processing (APP) solution seamlessly integrates with many travel-pass systems or “health passport” schemes like AOK, CommonPass, IATA Travel Pass, and Simply Go, bridging the gap between these schemes and aviation and border processes.
To support a “seamless and contactless” passenger journey, Health Protect also combines the functionality of passenger locator forms, health attestations, travel declarations, and SITA’s Electronic Travel Authorization (ETA), making sure that passengers certainly have the right documents at all times, in times when border regulations are constantly changing.
SITA Flex’s touchless passenger flow monitoring technology integrates with existing airport passenger processing systems at a given airport to verify the health status of each passenger at each point in the travel process.
Health Protect has already been tested with a group of travelers to the United Arab Emirates (UAE). In the trial, passengers obtained a negative COVID-19 test result via their SimplyGo app prior to travelling, to be accessed by airlines and border officials on boarding and arrival. SITA’s Advance Passenger Processing (APP) platform allowed the integration of safely stored data on the SimplyGo platform with the UAE government systems. SITA also plans for a trial at Malpensa Airport in Milan, Italy’s second busiest airport. SITA is also working closely with the Australian government, airlines and airports to support the implementation of strong border controls, leading the way for the safe future reopening of borders.
David Layorel, SITA’s CEO of airports and borders states that Health Protect has the potential to “bridge the gap between airlines resuming normal operations and governments’ strong focus on keeping control of COVID-19”.
That’s all for February peeps…
Stay tuned for next week’s installment of “Aircraft of the Month”!