TOKYO – A major Japanese airline on Monday started a trial of a mobile app developed by a global industry body to certify passengers’ coronavirus status as part of efforts to help the revival of international travel.
All Nippon Airways Co. will trial the International Air Transport Association Travel Pass on ANA’s flights connecting Tokyo with Honolulu and New York until June 6. The smartphone app shows travelers’ polymerase chain reaction test results — currently a condition of entry to most countries — and vaccination status.
A 52-year-old man, who took part in the trial, said at Tokyo’s Haneda airport, “It was convenient because I had only to show my smartphone.”
A total of 32 airliners have said they will join the trial, according to ANA, which already tested a similar app backed by the World Economic Forum called CommonPass in March.
The trials came as Japan plans to introduce “vaccine passports” to make it easier for people who have been inoculated against COVID-19 to travel internationally.
“As it is important to create an environment in which (passengers) can travel with peace of mind, the aviation industry has high hopes” for the IATA app, said Tadashi Matsushita, an ANA executive in charge of the project, adding the company wants to put it into practice as soon as it can.
“IATA Travel Pass enables passengers to easily verify whether they meet the COVID-19 testing requirements of their destination and share their test results with airlines and authorities in a secure way,” ANA President Yuji Hirako said earlier this year in a statement.