Air France Expands Health Passport Trial To Include California

Air France, in partnership with Groupe ADP, is trialing health passports for a number of its destinations out of Paris Charles de Gaulle. This program began over a week ago for the airline’s flights to the overseas territory destinations of Guadeloupe and Martinique. However, it is now expanding these digital health passports to its San Francisco and Los Angeles services.

Air France Expands Health Passport Trial To Include California
Health passports have been undergoing trials for Air France flights to Pointe-à-Pitre and Fort-de-France. Photo: Vincenzo Pace | Simple Flying

Streamlining test verification

Air France has chosen to use the ICC AOKpass app as a way to digitize COVID-19 test results. This four-week trial program for LAX and SFO is already underway as of March 15th and will allow Air France customers to “securely record the results of COVID-19 tests carried out in a partner laboratory.”

In trialing this app, the goal is to establish a more streamlined and trouble-free way to verify test-result documents – an ever-increasing requirement for international travel.

Customers who decide to try the app will benefit from “dedicated airport channels, with priority access at boarding and passport control on arrival in Paris.”

The launch of this second large-scale test programme between Paris and the airports of San Francisco and Los Angeles is a major step in the international recognition of ICC AOKpass as a trusted-third-party and the emergence of a new international standard. This is an essential condition for the resumption of international travel.

“From the medical laboratory and at every step of the journey, ICC AOKpass makes it possible to certify the negative COVID-19 status of passengers, to the entire air transport chain, for a safe return to travel.” -Sébastien Bedu, Airport Services Product Manager, MedAire

The overall program and the implementation of this app for Air France passengers is made possible with the cooperation of the airline, French airport operator Groupe ADP. San Francisco International Airport, and Los Angeles World Airports.

Air France Expands Health Passport Trial To Include California
Testing is increasingly becoming a requirement for international air travel. Photo: Getty Images

Using the ICC AOKpass

For travelers, there are several steps to using the pass:

  1. Take the required PCR or LAMP test (according to the regulations in force for the destination concerned) in a designated partner laboratory.
  2. Before or after the test, download the ICC AOKpass. After the test, the laboratory provides test results with a PDF document and a QR code. These can be entered into the app.
  3. At the airport, on the day of departure, travel documents are checked in a dedicated area. A QR code generated by the app should be displayed on the traveler’s smartphone as proof of negative COVID-19 status.
  4. The ICC AOKpass will then confirm that the test presented is valid and complies with the regulations of the country of destination.
  5. On arrival in Paris, customers will see the same signage associated with the trial. Following these signs, travelers will benefit from priority access for passport control, where they once again present the QR code on the AOKpass app.
Air France Expands Health Passport Trial To Include California
This program builds on an existing trial for Air France flights departing from Paris-Charles de Gaulle to Pointe-à-Pitre (Guadeloupe) and Fort-de-France (Martinique) in the French Caribbean. Launched on March 11th, the trial has been made entirely free of charge and has been completely voluntary. Photo: GCMap.com

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It should be noted that the app complies with all applicable GDPR standards and participants can access or delete their data at any time.

“We are convinced that the ICC AOKpass solution that we are testing with our partners at the departure and arrival points of the Paris airports will facilitate passenger channels through our terminals, by guaranteeing both greater fluidity and better control of health checks.” -Marc Houalla, Executive Director of Groupe ADP and Managing Director of Paris-Charles de Gaulle airport

One of several apps

The ICC AOKpass is now one of several “health passport” apps used around the world. This is in addition to apps like VeriFly and IATA’s Travel Pass. It would be nice to simplify travel and use just a single app.

However, one benefit of having multiple apps – especially in this modern digital age – is that it somewhat mitigates the damage caused by hacking and cybercriminals. While all services ensure traveler privacy and security, we know from experience that there is always a risk of a data breach, even with the most secure services.

Air France Expands Health Passport Trial To Include California
If all goes well, we could see this in use for all of Air France’s international services. Photo: Vincenzo Pace | Simple Flying

Thankfully, since flights right now are less frequent yet larger ordeals, having to download ‘one more app’ is an inconvenience worth enduring.

Have you used a health passport app yet? Share your experience with us in the comments.

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