Nov 13, 2020 - Economy & Business

Ticketmaster's digital health pass to battle coronavirus could be a model for airlines

Picture of fans at a Kip Moore concert in Las Vegas
Fans at a Kip Moore concert in Las Vegas. Photo: Ethan Miller/Getty Images

Ticketmaster's plan to ensure fan safety using a smartphone app could point to the future of air travel, according to SimpliFlying, an aviation consulting company.

Why it matters: People want to know they won't contract the coronavirus traveling on an airplane or attending a big event like a concert.

What's happening: Three global alliances representing 58 airlines are pushing governments to allow widespread COVID-19 testing of passengers instead of existing quarantine restrictions that they argue are ineffective and have killed travel demand.

  • Oneworld, Star Alliance and SkyTeam cited recent tests of the CommonPass digital health passport system, a nonprofit initiative backed by the World Economic Forum and Swiss-based foundation The Commons Project.
  • United Airlines is among the carriers that piloted the technology.

Ticketmaster's plan to require a digital health pass for concertgoers might be a model for airlines.

How it works: After purchasing a ticket, fans would need to verify they've been vaccinated or tested negative for coronavirus 24 to 72 hours before the event (depending on local health regulations), Billboard writes.

  • The fan would instruct the lab to share their status with a third-party health information company like CLEAR Health Pass or IBM's Digital Health Pass.
  • The health pass company would verify the attendee's COVID-19 status to Ticketmaster, which would then issue the fan the credentials needed to access the event.
  • Ticketmaster would not have access to fans' medical records and would only receive encrypted verification of whether a fan is cleared to attend an event on a given date.

The bottom line: No heath pass? No admittance. And perhaps, no flying.

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