It has been a year since the first reported case of Covid19 and resent news of vaccines progress has brought up positive outlook on upcoming months. Some of the major Pharmaceutical companies such as Pfizer and AstraZeneca among others, have announced major break-throughs in their developments.
These news bring a lot of joy for many sectors, especially for the aviation industry, which has been severely damaged by worldwide lockdowns and prohibitions on travelling. However, in the past few days a questions has be brought up to everybody’s attention – what is the correlation between resuming air travel and the expected Covid vaccine? This wondering was quickly address by some of the major airlines in Asia Pacific.
Qantas Chief Executive Alan Joyce said he has been talking to his counterparts at other airlines around the world about the possibility of a “vaccination passport” for international travellers.
“We are looking at changing our terms and conditions to say for international travellers, that we will ask people to have the vaccination before they get on the aircraft,” Joyce told Australia’s Network Nine television.
Korean Air, the country’s largest operator has issued a similar statement, saying that there is in fact a real possibility that airlines will require passengers to be vaccinated. That outlooks is based on the fact that governments are likely to require vaccinations as a condition for lifting quarantine requirements for new arrivals. Korean Air is also considering several other options for screening, but it is quite certain that any new changes that might be adopted would be a result of coordination with governments.
Air New Zealand shared quite the same opinion and has said that in the end it’s up to the governments to determine when and how it is safe to reopen borders and that they will continue to work closely with authorities on this matter.
Further more The International Air Transport Association (IATA) announced on Monday that it is “in the final development phase” of a “digital passport” mobile app that would receive COVID-19 test and vaccination certificates. According to IATA’s vice president of airport, passenger, cargo and security Nick Careen the app would get people back to travelling safely, which right now is essential for the seeking to recover industry.
Many more airlines are expected to comment on this hot topic in the coming weeks, but one thing is quite sure – everybody is hoping that air travelling is soon restored and the encouraging early results of the vaccines are only paving the way of achieving that soon.
Stay tuned and visit us for more updates on this.