Airport Authority HK works with LA International on digital health passes

A digital solution is required to effectively integrate COVID-19 testing into the existing digitalised travel process.

Recently the Airport Authority Hong Kong (AA) together with its business partners and Los Angeles International Airport conducted a trial of digital health pass at Hong Kong International Airport (HKIA).

Aimed to provide a simple and efficient means of health document check and verification process on both ends of a passenger journey, the trial was conducted with Los Angeles International Airport, Cathay Pacific, The Commons Project, one of the major digital health pass developers for international travel, and Prenetics — a COVID-19 test provider.

In the trial, air crew members of Cathay Pacific role-played as passengers and took the COVID-19 test at HKIA’s testing centre. Test results were sent to these passengers through the mobile application in the form of digital health pass which were presented to the airline staff for check-in. Upon arrival at Los Angeles International Airport, the role-playing passengers presented their digital health pass to local staff for validation and entered Los Angeles successfully.

Vivian Cheung executive director Airport Operations of the AA said the COVID-19 tests and vaccinations are poised to become new essentials for air travellers in the future, a digital solution is required to effectively integrate this new requirement into the existing digitalised travel process, from laboratory to check-in and to landing.

HKIA has been collaborating with major hub airports in the world to facilitate the adoption of digital solutions to tackle challenges such as trustworthiness of paper reports, diversified and dynamic entry requirements across countries and regions, long queues for passengers for document check, and labour-intensive checking duties for airline staff.

“Resumption of air travel in a safe way is our top priority,” she said. “Traffic recovery is hard to be sustainable with manual handling of the paper records without error to match the requirements of each country, which could also be changed from time to time.”






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