The International Air Transport Association (IATA) and Etihad Airways have announced a partnership to launch the IATA Travel Pass for passengers.

What is IATA Travel Pass?

It is a mobile app that contains information now required by many authorities, including

  • regulatory entry requirements and labs/test centres,
  • verified certificate issuance
  • digital identity
  • the “possibility for passengers to share their test results along their journey through their mobile device”

In effect the Travel Pass contains the information to verify if a passenger is eligible to undertake their travel journey.

To read more about it, see our previous article

IAG working with IATA on its new Travel Pass

IATA says that the Travel Pass “will keep passengers in control of their data and facilitate the sharing of their tests with airlines and authorities for travel”.

IATA’s Timatic, which is widely used by airlines to ensure compliance with passport and visa requirements at travellers’ destinations, will power the new service.

The addition of Covid-19 testing and entry requirement information to Timatic is expected to offer assurance to governments, passengers, and travel operators, and facilitate the safe reopening of borders.

“We will demonstrate that people can return to travel with confidence that they are meeting all government Covid-19 entry requirements,” says Nick Careen, senior vice president for airport, passenger, cargo, and security, IATA.

Who can use the pass? 

Initially, the pass will be offered to Etihad’s guests on selected flights from Abu Dhabi in the first quarter of 2021. If successful, the pass will be extended to other destinations on the airline’s network.

What does it cover? 

The pass features four independent modules which cover registries for regulatory entry requirements and labs/test centres, verified certificate issuance, digital identity, and the possibility for passengers to share their test results along their journey through their mobile device. These modules can work together as one complete end-to-end solution.

Commenting on the announcement, Mohammad Al Bulooki, chief operating officer, Etihad Aviation Group said:

“Covid-19 tests and vaccinations will be key to get the world flying again. Since August 1, 2020, Etihad is the only airline requiring a pre-departure negative PCR test result for all passengers worldwide, and again on arrival in Abu Dhabi, giving our guests the added assurance of safety when they travel with us.

“A high priority for Etihad is for our guests to have an easy, secure and efficient way to identify and verify their information. Being one of the first airlines globally working with IATA as a pioneer partner on the IATA Travel Pass is a big step forward for Etihad’s guests and for the industry.”

Nick Careen, IATA’s senior vice president, Airport, Passenger, Cargo and Security said:

“The Etihad Airways partnership to launch the IATA Travel Pass is an important milestone on the road to meaningfully restarting international travel.

“Our aim is to give all governments the confidence to re-open borders to travellers based on the verified vaccine and testing data. The initial stage of the Etihad launch will focus on all four elements of the IATA Travel Pass modules, one of the first airlines in the world to do so.”