American Airlines Passengers Can Upload COVID-19 Test Results to New Health Passport Before Travel
American Airlines passengers traveling internationally can now use a health passport app, with the capability to upload test results and required documents before boarding.
Launched in January, the carrier partnered with biometric authentication provider VeriFLY to give travelers a streamlined experience, keeping all their documents in one place.
The app — which was initially available to international travelers arriving to the U.S. and customers who are traveling from the U.S. to Jamaica, Chile, Colombia, El Salvador, Guatemala, and Honduras — has expanded to direct and connecting flights to the United Kingdom (in partnership with British Airways) and Canada.
"We are constantly looking at ways to make travel easier and simpler for our customers, and navigating testing requirements and validation is a big piece of that," Julie Rath, Vice President of Customer Experience, said in a statement Wednesday, regarding the expansion of the app. "All of our airports will now accept customers' testing verification via the VeriFLY app...With more partners like British Airways and others across the industry expanding their acceptance of VeriFLY, we can further our common goal of preventing the spread of COVID-19 and ensure compliance with local regulations that have been put in place to protect our customers and team members."
Customers can download VeriFLY from the app store, create an account, select their destination, and upload the necessary documents. Travelers will then be issued an activated pass they can use when boarding.
The U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention now requires anyone traveling to the U.S. to have proof of a negative COVID-19 test prior to boarding a flight. The viral test must be taken within three days of a passenger's scheduled departure.
VeriFly echoes several similar digital health passport efforts, including one from the International Air Transport Association (IATA), which plans to store everything from test results to a global registry of testing and vaccination centers.
The concept of vaccine passports is a new element in travel safety as the world becomes inoculated from coronavirus, and potentially replace testing requirements going forward. In fact, Dr. Anthony Fauci, the director of the National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases, has said it is "quite possible" showing proof of vaccination will be required for travel in the future.
Alison Fox is a contributing writer for Travel + Leisure. When she's not in New York City, she likes to spend her time at the beach or exploring new destinations and hopes to visit every country in the world. Follow her adventures on Instagram.