In this photo image, the “COVID-19 PCR test result has been verified” message from the IATA (International Air Transport Association) Travel Pass app mobile application is displayed on a smartphone screen in front of the IATA logo.
Pavlo Gonchar | LightRocket | Getty Images
Travel restrictions that require evidence of Covid-19 vaccines or negative tests should be lifted once the pandemic is under control, the new head of the International Air Transport Association said on Wednesday.
“These are measures that may be required as temporary precautions during this crisis. Once we are through this crisis, we would like these restrictions to be permanently lifted so that people can go back to travel as they did in 2019,” Willie Walsh, former CEO of British Airways’ parent company, International Consolidated Airlines Group, said in his first press conference as IATA General Director.
Meanwhile, Walsh said travelers need access to digital health certificates to make traveling easier.
Airlines, hotel companies and other tourism companies have urged government agencies to work towards lifting travel restrictions, such as banning most non-citizens from Europe to the US and vice versa for more than a year.They also urged government officials to set standards for digital health passports as more people are vaccinated.
IATA, which represents almost 300 airlines worldwide, has introduced its own digital health passport. IATA said Singapore will accept it next month so travelers can upload their Covid-19 test results to show airlines and immigration officials. Some airlines like JetBlue Airways and United Airlines have announced attempts by the Commons Project Foundation with another digital health passport.