All About the Travel App Set to Reopen Borders Around the World

IATA Travel Pass

With the COVID-19 vaccine already rolling out around Australia, the days of strict border closures are surely numbered.

We’re not confident exactly when it is we’ll be able to hop on a plane and fly overseas for a Euro summer — and we certainly have a ways to go before that could even be a reality — but we’re definitely getting closer.

A few things need to happen first before we could consider whipping out our passports again (on that note, where are our passports?!). For starters, we’ll need to continue vaccinating the Australian population. In NSW, the latest news is that the entire state could be vaccinated in mere months. So that’s good.

Second, the world needs to align on a simple, effective means of contact tracing while on the road. A one-stop-shop where travel documents, health information, and testing records can be kept and accessed easily by those who need to view them. And in some great news, it seems officials have landed on a game-changing new app.

The IATA Travel Pass is set to launch from the International Air Transport Association (IATA), according to CNN Travel. Almost 300 of the world’s airlines are members of the global trade association.

The free mobile app currently being developed as a means of helping airlines safely resume international travel, allowing for the reopening of borders all around the world — maybe even without quarantine.

The app hopes to serve as a “global and standardized solution to validate and authenticate all country regulations regarding Covid-19 passenger travel requirements”, and it will carry out four key functionalities.

A registry of health requirements will help passengers check the individual requirements of the destination to which they are travelling. Then, travellers will be able to check the global registry of testing and vaccination centres, to make sure they’ve done what’s required of them before arriving at the airport.

Associated clinics will be able to securely upload e-vaccination certificates directly to the app, which the passenger can then show officials as proof of vaccination.

Finally, the app will serve as a something of a hub for all travel-related enquiries and documents. They’ll be able to upload a digital passport and other relevant travel forms.

“To re-open borders without quarantine and restart aviation governments need to be confident that they are effectively mitigating the risk of importing COVID-19. This means having accurate information on passengers’ COVID-19 health status,” the IATA says on its website.

“Informing passengers on what tests, vaccines and other measures they require prior to travel, details on where they can get tested and giving them the ability to share their tests and vaccination results in a verifiable, safe and privacy-protecting manner is the key to giving governments the confidence to open borders.”

The free app will be available to download from March, 2021. In the meantime, you’re free to focus entirely on the travel inspiration that will help inform the first international flight you take.

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