By Linda Blachly
Etihad Airways and health and security services specialist MedAire will pilot the International Chamber of Commerce’s (ICC) "AOKpass” on the UAE carrier’s Paris (CDG)-Abu Dhabi (AUH) flights.
The collaboration with will see Etihad passengers on the route use the AOKpass mobile app to track the progress of their pre-departure COVID-19 test and carry their verified result.
The introduction of the app follows an initial pilot for Etihad launched in September 2020 that the ICC deemed a success.
“As the world continues to address the COVID-19 pandemic, ICC AOKpass will provide governments, businesses and travelers everywhere with a standardized, digital solution to restore global mobility. This is a key milestone in ICC’s mission to deliver a COVID-19 health status verification solution that respects user privacy and reignites consumer confidence in air travel,” ICC secretary general John Denton said.
Under current regulations, travelers arriving in Abu Dhabi are required to obtain a negative COVID-19 test prior to departure, ensuring that 100% of passengers on board are COVID-19-free. They are also tested on arrival at AUH. Under the pilot program, Etihad passengers are able to securely store their test results digitally on their mobile devices for later verification at the airport.
According to ICC, the AOKpass system completes this verification “using a global, incorruptible blockchain-based network—ensuring all test results are genuine, valid, and in line with government regulations.”
Etihad Aviation Group COO Mohammad Al Bulooki said: “By collaborating with MedAire, this pilot [program] will explore enhanced operational efficiencies, improved customer experience and greater compliance with regulations that restrict the spread of COVID-19 to keep the world healthy. Additionally, it will provide greater assurance that everyone on board an Etihad aircraft has verifiably tested negative for COVID-19.”