We have been warning about the likelihood that immunity passports would soon become ubiquitous on international (and maybe even domestic) flights as air travelers appreciate the allure of simply storing one's COVID test and/or vaccination status on a smartphone app had become almost too simple to pass up.
China started using smartphones to track individual COVID status almost immediately after the pandemic went transnational, allowing even the residents of Wuhan to "Party like it's 2019" for a big chunk of last year.
And now, American Airlines has confirmed on Wednesday that the airline will expand use of the VeriFLY app starting Wednesday at US airports for flights to eight countries in an effort to simplify compliance with government travel requirements, Business Traveler reported.
Here's some more information about the "mobile health wallet", which allows customers to upload their COVID test and/or vaccination results to the app for free use on their phone.
American Airlines has announced that it will now accept mobile health wallet Verifly at all of its airports in the US. The requirement that travelers show documents for travel on the airline will apply to direct and connecting flights from the carrier’s US airports to the UK, Canada, Chile, Colombia, El Salvador, Guatemala, Honduras, and Jamaica.
American Airlines' "partnership" with Verifly was initially introduced in November 2020, with trials on the carrier’s flights from (or connecting through) Miami International airport to the Jamaican destinations of Montego Bay and Kingston. Recently, the airline introduced the Verifly health passport for international flights to the US.
This news comes after the announcement that joint business and Oneworld partner British Airways will begin to trial Verifly for flights from London to the US from February 4.
Commenting on the expansion, Julie Rath, Vice President of Customer Experience at American Airlines, said "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. All of our airports will now accept customers’ testing verification via the Verifly app, which is a great expansion of our trial from MIA that began last fall. 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."
Of course none of this is actually a surprise: We have been warning for months that governments, megacorps etc had succeeded in selling the narrative that life cannot return to normal until there is a vaccine for COVID. Just as President Trump promised, in the US, UK and EU, jabs are already being doled out as rapidly as possible, even if programs in the US and elsewhere have been fraught with glitches, as the Organic Prepper reminded us a few weeks ago.
In a recent post, Business Traveler outlined a list of nearly a dozen key competitors battling to become the dominant app-based "immunity" passports. Read the whole thing below:.