Passengers Can Now Automatically Send Test Results To United

Major US airline United has upgraded its travel app to allow customers to find and schedule a COVID-19 PCR test, as well as receiving their results and notifying the airline. More than 200 locations are already available for testing, with more being added in the weeks to come.

United Airlines Boeing 787-10 Dreamliner N13013
United is making it even easier for its passengers to get ready to travel. Photo: Vincenzo Pace | Simple Flying

Test, validate and get travel ready

United Airlines is making it easier for its passengers to get their PCR test and to validate their COVID-19 status with the airline. Through their app, passengers can find a book a location to have their test done. Once complete, results will be delivered to the passenger and to the airline automatically.

If the test results are negative and other destination requirements are met, customers will be alerted by the app that they are ‘travel ready.’ This will trigger the production of their mobile boarding pass, letting people get ready to travel in a seamless, stress-free manner.

United’s Chief Customer Officer Toby Enqvist commented on the initiative, saying,

“We continue to look for innovative solutions that make travel easier and safer for our customers and employees. This new feature enables customers to travel with confidence knowing they can quickly locate a testing provider if they need one, schedule an appointment and get the results they need – all within the United Travel-Ready Center experience.”

TrustAssure-United Airlines
Passengers can locate a testing center in the app, and will receive their results in the app also. Photo: United Airlines

United says that its customers will be able to access more than 200 different testing sites across the TrustAssure network. These sites include some within United’s own hubs at Chicago, New York-Newark, San Francisco, Houston and Los Angeles. Others are located at major pharmacy chains and drug stores.

Although the list of testing locations is fairly extensive already, not every location is included. United says it plans to remedy this in the future, adding more US cities to its provider list. It also notes it plans to add international testing facilities for its customers flying into the United States.

The initiative is part of United’s ‘Travel-Ready Center’ project, launched back in January this year. Through United’s hub of resources, passengers have been able to book flights, check requirements, book COVID testing and report their status. Already more than 275,000 tests have been carried out through the program; now, United is removing one more step in the process for its fliers.

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United Airlines Boeing 757-200 (2)
United is still hopeful Europe will be opening up for the summer. Photo: Vincenzo Pace | Simple Flying

Hoping for international

Although United is still restricted on where it can fly, with Europeans mainly banned from entering the States, the airline has remained upbeat about the potential in this market for the summer season. Greece and Iceland, both now accepting vaccinated travelers, have spurred a surge in holiday bookings with the airline, with the latter the best booked transatlantic destination this summer.

Of course, the key United market of the UK is still closed. Nevertheless, the airline remains hopeful that restrictions will soon ease, given the UK’s impressive efforts to roll out the vaccine at pace. Speaking at the airline’s recent earnings call, Executive Vice President and Chief Commercial Officer at United, Andrew Nocella, commented,

“We anticipate operating between eight and ten daily flights to London Heathrow this summer, if and when a travel corridor is permitted to open.”

United is putting all the building bricks in place to ensure a smooth transition for its passengers. The ‘Travel-Ready’ initiative and today’s upgrading of the app’s functionality effectively removes another hurdle for those willing to fly.