Singapore to accept COVID-19 digital travel certificate from May

Singapore will, from May, accept visitors who use a mobile travel pass containing digital certificates for COVID-19 tests and vaccines.

Its aviation regulator said on Monday, becoming one of the first countries to adopt the initiative.

Singapore will accept the International Air Transport Association (IATA) mobile travel pass for pre-departure checks, where travellers can get clearance to fly to and enter Singapore by showing a smartphone application containing their data from accredited laboratories.

The pass was successfully tested by Singapore Airlines.

More than 20 carriers, including Emirates, Qatar Airways and Malaysia Airlines were also testing the pass.

“The success of our joint efforts will make IATA’s partnership with the government of Singapore a model for others to follow,’’ IATA Director-General, Willie Walsh, said in a statement.

Asian business hub Singapore, which has had relatively few coronavirus cases in 2021, has been a leader in developing and using technology during the pandemic and wants to be among the first countries to reopen to host international events.

Airlines are hoping more countries will approve digital passes on apps to allow travel to resume faster and avoid complications and delays at airports where multiple checks on documents are required.

Currently, travellers from most countries are required to take pre-departure COVID-19 swab tests within 72 hours of their flights in order to travel to Singapore, with results presented at airport check-in and on arrival.

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