Virgin Atlantic has introduced COVID-19 pre-flight testing at its Heathrow base for its cabin crew and pilots.
Launched on the 30th September on flights to Shanghai and Hong Kong, the airline plans to extend the trial to Barbados and select services later in October, before a wider roll out to test every operating crew at least once per month.
In partnership with GeneMe UK, official distributor of the FRANKD test, the airline trial is offering crew and pilots a rapid Point of Care COVID-19 RT LAMP test. In independent laboratory tests, FRANKD is shown to be 100% specific and 97% sensitive to detecting SARS-CoV-2.
Through integration with the digital ID platform Yoti, the test process is fast, secure, paperless and does not require a lab. After a swab is taken on-site, results are processed and delivered on the Yoti app within 30 minutes.
The airline recently also introduced complimentary COVID-19 global insurance cover for all bookings. The cover will apply to all existing and new bookings, travelling from 24 August 2020 up until 31 March 2021. The insurance policy with Allianz Assistance offers comprehensive cover in the event that a Virgin Atlantic customer or travel companion becomes ill with COVID-19 while on a trip.