UPDATED: Singapore rolling out IATA Travel Pass

Changi Airport also launches Safe Travel Concierge as one-stop portal for pre-travel guidance and COVID-19 test booking

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Airlines like Singapore Air have had to ground thousands of planes. (PHOTO: Steve Strike/Outback Photographics)

Use this oneSingapore aviation authorities announced on Monday (5 April) that passengers travelling to the city-state by air will be able to use the International Air Transport Association (IATA) Travel Pass to share their pre-departure COVID-19 Polymerase Chain Reaction (PCR) test results with their airline during check-in, as well as on arrival at the immigration checkpoints at Changi Airport. This is part of an ongoing collaboration between the Civil Aviation Authority of Singapore (CAAS) and IATA to facilitate seamless and efficient travel through digital certificates of COVID-19 tests.

The IATA Travel Pass is a personal secure digital wallet solution that can be used by passengers to obtain and store their COVID-19 test results from accredited laboratories. Such solutions will help drive adoption of digital health certificates and facilitate the secure verification of the health credentials of travellers. This is a positive step towards smooth air travel and safeguarding of public health. Following the successful trials by Singapore Airlines, the Singapore health and border control authorities will accept the IATA Travel Pass as a valid form of presentation of COVID-19 pre-departure test results for entry into Singapore. The information presented on the IATA Travel Pass will be in a format that satisfies Singapore’s prevailing COVID-19 pre-departure test requirements for entry into Singapore.

Empty check-in counters at Singapore’s Changi Airport. The airport has shut down two terminals and halted construction on a new one due to the COVID-19 pandemic. (PHOTO: Matt Driskill)

CAAS and IATA will be working on further enhancements to the IATA Travel Pass. This includes enabling QR code scanning by immigration officers and back-end transmission of health credentials from the IATA Travel Pass to the airlines’ and immigration authorities’ systems for pre-boarding and pre-arrival clearance, as well as including digital vaccination certificates in the IATA Travel Pass.

CAAS Director-General Kevin Shum said, “we have built upon our long standing and deep partnership with IATA to develop solutions to facilitate travel. This latest collaboration with IATA demonstrates our shared commitment to drive the adoption of digital health certificates and restore international air travel. As we work to safely rebuild the Changi air hub, we will continue to explore other solutions that can provide similarly secure and verifiable means of sharing health certificates for safe international travel.”

Willie Walsh, the newly installed director general of IATA, said “having the confidence of an aviation leader like Singapore in IATA Travel Pass is hugely significant. Ongoing trials put us on track for IATA Travel Pass to be a critical tool for the industry’s restart by delivering verified travel health credentials to governments. And travellers can have complete confidence that their personal data is secure and under their own control. The success of our joint efforts will make IATA’s partnership with the government of Singapore a model for others to follow.”

The IATA Travel Pass app will be available for download in the second half of April. It is being trialled by more than 20 airlines, including Singapore Airlines. Travellers to Singapore intending to use the IATA Travel Pass should check with the airline they are travelling with for eligibility to use the IATA Travel Pass.

Changi launches new COVID companion
Meanwhile, Singapore’s Changi Airport said on Monday that it was launching the Safe Travel Concierge (STC) by Changi Airport Group (CAG). The service lets passengers book their on-arrival COVID-19 Polymerase Chain Reaction (PCR) test and check that they have completed all pre-travel requirements. Instead of searching different websites to apply for their pre-travel documents, passengers can easily access the information and forms through STC.

Border closures and quarantines mean very passengers are coming to Changi Airport in Singapore. (PHOTO: Matt Driskill)

After registering for an STC account, passengers just need to add their upcoming trips. Depending on their profile and trip details, they will be shown a customised list of pre-travel requirements to complete before flying to Singapore. Besides booking their on-arrival PCR test, passengers can also access services such as the Immigration and Checkpoints Authority’s electronic Arrival Card and Health Declaration form through STC. Passengers can also stay updated with the latest Covid-19 news with the portal. Please refer to Annex for a full list of features in STC.

CAG’s Managing Director for Airport Operations Management Jayson Goh said the online concierge service can ease the anxiety of air travel by helping passengers navigate their pre-travel requirements. “As we prepare for the reopening of international borders, Changi Airport continues to innovate and leverage technology to ensure a safe and pleasant traveller experience for our passengers. With the support of the Singapore Tourism Board, we first trialed the STC prototype at TravelRevive, the first hybrid tradeshow in Singapore. We are glad to launch it today for all passengers and encourage them to use it for a smoother experience at Changi Airport.”

Passengers may register for an STC account on safetravel.changiairport.com.

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