SITA and AOKpass will work in collaboration with other companies, including AOKpass launch associates International SOS/MedAire and the International Chamber of Commerce (ICC), to facilitate secure return to international travel.

Previously, SITA and AOKpass worked together on operational pilots for 30 days for flights operating from and to airports in Paris (CDG), San Francisco (SFO) and Los Angeles (LAX).

Soon, the partners will launch a joint deployment to facilitate the Hong Kong (HKD)-to-Singapore (SIN) travel bubble, which is slated to reopen this month.

AOKpass CEO Darren Toh said: “AOKpass has been operationalising successful large-scale deployments for airlines and airports since September 2020, providing safe and secure Covid-19 status verification for thousands of passengers. We’re just one of the many critical players needed to reactivate international travel. Interoperating with industry leaders such as SITA is vital to any truly global effort to overcome the unprecedented barriers Covid has imposed on cross-border mobility.”

SITA will be able to incorporate privacy-preserving health pass verification functionality into its solutions after combining with the AOKpass system.

This integration is said to result in creating an end-to-end frictionless experience across the entire journey of passengers.

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SITA vice-president Jeremy Springall said: “A key benefit of SITA Health Protect is a unique ability to seamlessly integrate with multiple travel pass or ‘health passport’ schemes, bridging the gap between these schemes and aviation and border processes. Critically, by incorporating Advance Passenger Processing (APP), it enables authorities to make an informed decision about whether a passenger can travel at the point of check-in, improving the safety of all passengers.”

Until now, AOKpass has been deployed in 13 countries, involving more than 500 flights.

Last month, SFO and United Airlines (UA) unveiled plans to test SITA’s Smart Path biometric solution for domestic travellers on select flights.