May 31. The International Air Transport Association (IATA) warned of potential airport chaos unless governments move quickly to adopt digital processes to manage travel health credentials (COVID-19 testing and vaccine certificates) and other COVID-19 measures.
“Without an automated solution for COVID-19 checks, we can see the potential for significant airport disruptions on the horizon,” said Willie Walsh, IATA’s director general. “Already, average passenger processing and waiting times have doubled from what they were pre-crisis during peak time—reaching an unacceptable three hours.”
According to IATA, if governments require COVID-19 health credentials for travel, integrating them into already automated processes is the solution for a smooth restart. This would need globally recognized, standardized, and interoperable digital certificates for COVID-19 testing and vaccine certificates.
IATA says digitalized certificates have several advantages: They help avoid fraudulent documentation; they enable advance “ready-to-fly” checks by governments; they reduce queuing, crowding and waiting time in airports through integration with self-service check-in (via the internet, kiosks or mobile phone apps); they increase security through integration with digital identity management being used by border control authorities; and they reduce the risk of virus transmission via the person-to-person exchange of paper documents.
IATA asks the G7 to work with the air transport industry to take leadership in restarting the global travel sector. By engaging with the air transport industry, we can ensure that government requirements for safe travel are met with solutions that can be efficiently operationalized.
Source: Insider Travel Report