American has become the first US airline to introduce a new app for passengers to provide results of a negative COVID test to border officials.
The business said the VeriFLY app will be available for travellers from 23 January and comes after the US government’s requirement that all passengers two years of age and older require a test result.
“We’re expanding our work with VeriFLY to quickly evolve our usage of the app and make international travel easier for our customers,” said Julie Rath, vice president of customer experience at American. “We support the implementation of a global program to require COVID-19 testing for travellers to the United States, and we want to do everything we can to make travel a seamless experience for customers.
“We’ve received positive feedback about the app so far and look forward to more customers having the opportunity to use it.”
Customers can already use VeriFLY to streamline their travel from the US to several countries including Jamaica, Chile, Colombia, El Salvador, Guatemala, and Honduras. To date, thousands of American Airlines customers have travelled using the app.
Last week, World of Aviation reported how Swissport has opened a five-hour turnaround COVID testing facility at Zurich Airport.
Unlike most PCR tests, Swissport’s innovation uses a saliva sample and not a nasal swab, therefore it can be self-administered.
“The tests are sold as self-test kits on site and can be performed in test boxes independently, with no assistance required by medical personnel,” said Swissport subsidiary Checkport Schweiz AG in a statement.
The test boxes are cleaned after each traveller, before the samples are sent to a lab four times a day by courier. Each test costs €180 and the centre is open every day between 6am and 8pm, with no appointment necessary.
“The tests are intended for people who do not show COVID-19 symptoms but need a test for travel or in order to participate at specific events. Especially airline passengers benefit from this quick PCR testing option, as only PCR tests are currently accepted by authorities for entry into countries requiring a COVID-19 test certificate.”
Dubai was one of the first countries to ask travellers to submit for testing, but is now joined by countries including the UK, Canada and Australia.
Additional reporting by Airlinerwatch.com