COVID-19 destroyed the busiest travel time of the year as families were unable to go over the river and through the woods for a holiday communion, but a new passport could change the way we travel the airways.
However, this year, health and government officials requested individuals not to travel and to stay home for the safety of themselves and others.
A Passport for Safer Travels
Travel officials are finding a way to keep the airline industry afloat by working to create special passports with COVID-19 vaccination information printed on the form of identification for those traveling to foreign countries.
The International Air Transport Association (IATA) announced Saturday it was in the final phase of developing the special passport. The new passport could become essential in rebuilding the downfall of the tourism industry.
‘Testing is the first key to enable international travel without quarantine measures. The second key is the global information infrastructure needed to securely manage, share and verify test data matched with traveler identities in compliance with border control requirements,’ Alexandre de Juniac, IATA CEO, said in a statement obtained by The Hill.
If a traveler receives a COVID-19 vaccine, it is likely to be confirmed and linked to their official passport.
Which Countries Will Enforce COVID-19 Vaccinations
At this point, no countries have enacted any vaccination rules before entering other countries.
However, some countries, including Australia and New Zealand, will use extra caution. The virus is largely controlled in those countries with visitors being unable to enter the border without receiving a shot.
At this point, it is unknown which airlines will require vaccination confirmation before boarding the plane. Qantas, an Australian airline may require all passengers to have received vaccines before being able to board.
The ‘New Normal’ in the Airline Industry
If countries and airlines decide to use the mandatory vaccine process, then the ‘vaccination passport’ may become the “new normal” of travel by airways.
The IATA says a ‘vaccination passport’ may bring a sense of peace to travelers and airline staff. The special passport could help increase the number of individuals traveling around the world.
Airlines for America, a trade association that represents major carriers, hasn’t announced the need for a mandatory vaccine.
At this point, Airlines for America announces U.S. airlines are ‘committing to restoring service in a manner that prioritizes the safety and wellbeing of our passengers and employees.’
CEO Alan Joyce said earlier this week he predicts the rule will become a practice used across the globe, and the airlines will be implementing the vaccine once available to the public.
“We are looking at changing our terms and conditions to say for international travelers that we will ask people to have a vaccination before they can get on the aircraft,” said Joyce.
The first step in the airline industry thriving once again is by using a global supply and distribution network. The system is currently in preparation to be releasing the vaccine upon approval.
Passport Plans in Place for Airlines to Soar Once Again
The passport vaccination comes as the United States is preparing to distribute vaccines from Moderna and Pfizer. Both of the pharmaceutical companies’ vaccines have efficacy rates above 94 percent.
United Airlines is currently operating charter flights. They are moving Pfizer’s vaccination previous to a mass inoculation taking place. The inoculation is expecting to take place in late December, according to a report.
Other plans are being applied. These include the use of sewage testing on planes, monitoring ankle bracelets, and DNA testing.
United Airlines is receiving special permission from the Federal Aviation Authority (FAA). They are flying with an increased quantity of dry ice keeping the vaccine at the correct temperature of minus 70 degrees Celsius.
Wall Street Journal reports the chartered routes being flown are unknown to be either domestic or international flights.
It has been revealed the airline is working on flying cargo flights between Belgium’s capital, Brussels, and Chicago’s O’Hare airport. This will aid in the distribution of the vaccine, according to a letter from the FAA viewed by the Journal.
Information Provided by The Daily Mail
- The International Air Transport Association (IATA) is developing a digital ‘vaccination passport.’
- They say it is crucial for vaccination data to match with a traveler’s identity if the tourism industry is to quickly reboot.
- Therefore, a person’s vaccination history may be linking digitally to their physical passport in the future.
- No countries have yet declared that international arrivals will have to be vaccinated for COVID-19 before they arrive at their borders.
- Airlines have similarly not confirmed that they will mandate the vaccine.
- However, if countries and airlines decide to do so, the ‘vaccination passport’ could become an essential component of international travel.