GE Digital and TE Food are helping Emirates trial a new app – TrustOne – that allows passengers to schedule Covid-19 tests prior to travel, in some cases at a discount. The app is being piloted across the UAE, France, UK, Spain and the Netherlands.
PCR tests are virtually a necessity for air passengers nowadays, with most countries demanding a negative result within short hours of travel. Scheduling these tests at the last minute is an ongoing challenge, and the short notice often means a hefty price tag.
True to its customer-centric ethos, Emirates is looking to solve these problems through TrustOne. “With this latest solution, provided in partnership by GE Digital Aviation Software and TE Food, passengers will be able to easily source accurate information on tests, approved laboratories to get tested, as well as other vital measures to be taken prior to travel,” explained Adel Al Redha, Chief Operating Officer at Emirates.
A one-stop-shop for information, bookings and results aside, TrustOne also presents the opportunity of a discount if passengers choose to test with Eurofins – a global group of testing laboratories. A Eurofins PCR test can cost TrustOne users as little as €70 – compared to the average of around €100. For passengers testing within the UAE, this could even drop below €30.
With logistics support from TE Food, the app’s technology was designed by GE Digital – leveraging its newly bolstered aviation capabilities. In December, the software solutions firm acquired the digital arm of GE Aviation – a global aircraft engine supplier. The resultant entity – GE Digital Aviation Software – boasts capabilities in flight safety, network operations, fuel asset records and data integration among a range of other offerings.
“Our business thrives in large part because of our commitment to innovating with our customers. This app marks another proud moment in the partnership between GE Digital and Emirates. The airline is dedicated to being at the leading edge of innovation, and we’re extremely excited to make the TrustOne app available to its customers,” said Rami Aynati, General Manager Commercial EMEA at GE Digital.
Piloting the app
The app is still in a pilot phase across key markets. For now, passengers still need a printed copy of their PCR test result – as mandated by several countries. Later stages of the trial in a few months will extend the pool of test countries, while also enabling digital test validation at the airport via TrustOne. And there is more to come.
“This is the first step in making international travel during the pandemic as convenient as possible by facilitating pre-travel requirements. The app will be further enhanced with more capabilities to meet all government testing and verification requirements, and Emirates customers will be among the first to have these services,” concluded Aynati.
The partnership is poised for success, building on the precedent of prior collaboration. In 2019, Emirates and GE Aviation got together to adopt the latter’s FlightPulse solution – a data analytics system that enables pilots to boost flight efficiency and reduce carbon emissions. This was in addition to implementing GE Aviations’s Flight Operations Quality Assurance programme – a data-driven flight-monitoring programme designed to reduce flight risk.
For Al Redha, this latest collaboration will lend value and relevance to the Emirates brand at a time of transition. “We are constantly looking for solutions to improve our customer experience. Travel requirements today are dynamic, and even more than ever, our goal is to give our customers confidence and enable them to travel safely.”
According to a recent study by ICF, despite travellers being very open to resuming flying once widespread Covid-19 vaccinations are the case, the EMEA region will need four to five years to reach pre-corona air travel levels.