IATA travel pass comes to India

  • IndiGo becomes first Indian airline to launch a pilot for IATA Travel Pass
  • To initiate pilot from August 20, 2021
  • Over 45 airlines are trialing it right now

IndiGo – India’s largest carrier by fleet and domestic market share has decided to trial the IATA (International Air Transport Association) Travel Pass starting August 20, 2021. IndiGo will thus become the first and only carrier from India to travel the pass.

IndiGo became an IATA member in October 2019. IATA has been working on its Travel Pass initiative to ensure that governments can re-open borders and passenger traffic can return to the skies sooner. The Travel Pass is a mobile app that helps travellers to store and manage their verified certifications for COVID-19 tests or vaccines. It is more secure and efficient than current paper processes used to manage health requirements. This is important given the potentially enormous scale of testing or vaccine verifications that will need to be securely managed. This will also ensure that cases of fake certificates are detected and helps travel be safer.

The pass will enable IndiGo passengers to create a ‘digital passport’ to verify their pre-travel test or vaccination status to meet the SOPs of the destination. The passengers will be able to share the test and vaccination certificates with authorities as well as airlines to facilitate travel. The app will also enable passengers to manage and save all their travel documentation digitally and seamlessly throughout the travel experience.

The platform will also enable authorized labs and test centres to securely send test results or vaccination certificates to passengers. The global registry, operated by IATA, will manage, and allow the secure flow of necessary information amongst all stakeholders and to provide a seamless passenger experience.

The challenge with the app is that the entire ecosystem has to be part of the process and that includes the labs testing for COVID-19 and integration to ensure vaccination certificates are visible as well.

Over 45 airlines are currently trialing the IATA Travel Pass. This includes the likes of Emirates, Singapore Airlines, Swiss and Virgin Atlantic along with Low Cost Carriers like Pegasus and Vietjet.

International travel continues to be suspended from India and less than 15,000 passengers depart from India on a daily basis. If the Travel Pass is accepted world wide, it could potentially become a simpler solution with multiple airlines, governments and service providers onboard to restart air travel.

The below diagram from IATA gives a perspective of how the Travel Pass works.

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