The Qantas Airways Limited (ASX: QAN) share price closed lower today after it announced it will soon require Australians travelling internationally to hold a ‘health passport’.
The airline will be working with the International Air Transport Association (IATA) to create a digital health pass. Future passengers on Qantas and Jetstar international flights will be required to use the pass.
The Qantas share price finished today’s session at $4.62. That’s 0.43% lower than its closing price yesterday.
Let’s take a closer look at today’s news from Qantas.
Digital health pass for overseas travel
The Qantas share price suffered today despite the airline announcing a new safety measure for future international travellers.
The IATA Travel Pass will let airlines, border staff, and health officials verify travellers’ COVID-19 test results and vaccination status.
Additionally, the pass will check whether a traveller’s vaccination and COVID-19 status will pass conditions set by specific flights and borders.
Qantas said its pass will work well within the Australian Government’s four-phase national COVID-19 response plan.
The second phase of the government’s plan might allow more vaccinated Australians to return from overseas. The third phase could lift all restrictions on Australians looking to leave the country.
Qantas pushed back the resumption of its international flights to late December 2021 in May. The Qantas share price sank 5.5% over the 2 days following the announcement.
Qantas also mentioned that the United Kingdom, United States, and Canada require proof of vaccination to enter without quarantining.
Commentary from management
Qantas’ chief customer officer, Stephanie Tully commented:
A digital health pass will connect customers with COVID testing facilities, health authorities and airlines, and ultimately enable the opening of more travel bubbles and borders.
The IATA Travel Pass will allow travellers to have their COVID test results and vaccine information verified securely, which will be their green light to fly internationally with us.
Qantas share price snapshot
This year hasn’t been a great one for the Qantas share price.
It is currently 5.9% lower than it was at the start of the year. However, it has gained 37.5% since this time last year.