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COVID-19 ‘travel pass’ in Middle East soon

12 Jun 2021 By AFP

The International Air Transport Association announced on Thursday its digital travel pass will ‘go live’ in the Middle East in the coming weeks, as Europe and the US relax travel restrictions.

Countries around the world are racing to adopt digital certificates in order to unlock an expected revival in international tourism after the coronavirus pandemic crippled the aviation industry for more than a year. 

No one vaccine certification system has been universally accepted or recognised, though IATA’s travel pass has gained popularity among Gulf carriers. 

“The IATA travel pass will go live in the next couple of weeks with a number of carriers in the Middle East region,” Willie Walsh, IATA’s director general, said on Thursday. Emirates, Etihad Airways and Qatar Airways were among the first to start testing the app in January.   

IATA’s pass is a mobile app that would enable passengers to create a ‘digital passport’ to provide proof of their testing and vaccination history that can be shared with airlines and immigration officials.

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