Sunday 14 March 2021 11:29 am

British Airways to launch own 'vaccine passport'

British Airways will launch its own digital “vaccine passport” in time for the return of international travel in May.

Those who have had two doses of the coronavirus vaccine will be asked to log their details in BA’s existing app.

The step is part of moves to entice people back to flying when the current restrictions end. To that end, BA will also reintroduce free water and snacks in economy class for short-haul flights.

Currently the flag carrier is trialling the VeriFly vaccine passport system, with plans to introduce it when the ban of international travel lifts on 17 May.

BA is not the first carrier to take the step. Last week Irish flier Ryanair launched its own in-app vaccine passport system.

Several other airlines, including Qatar Airways, Air Serbia, and Rwandair, are also trialling aviation body IATA’s version.

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Sean Doyle, the carrier’s chief executive, has called on the government to show “leadership” in laying out its plans for the restart of travel.

A government taskforce is due to report on how the government can do so in a safe and controlled manner on 12 April.

MPs have already urged the government to make the report and its recommendations public as soon as it has been received.

Doyle said that as well as those who had been vaccinated, anyone who could show a negative Covid test should be able to fly.

“I think people who’ve been vaccinated should be able to travel without restriction. Those who have not been vaccinated should be able to travel with a negative test result”, he said.

BA has struck a deal with a testing kit provider giving its passengers £33 tests to take abroad.