MADRID (Reuters) – Nine out of 10 Spaniards would use digital health passports to travel, a survey showed on Tuesday, while seven in 10 would store their health data digitally if it meant faster passage through airports and fewer in-person interactions.
Commissioned by travel booking group Amadeus, the survey highlighted Spanish participants’ willingness to use digital health technology in the wake of the COVID-19 pandemic – as well as their concerns over how, when, and with whom to share such personal information.
Over 35% of respondents were preoccupied about their health information being hacked or a lack of transparency and control over where their data would be shared.
In March, Amadeus announced it would deploy a new feature allowing people to upload documents such as COVID-19 vaccination certificates or PCR test results within the travel tech firm’s existing platform for storing identification data.
As the travel industry scrambles for ways to get planes flying again and Europe’s tourism-dependent nations eye the upcoming summer season, calls for a harmonised way of sharing traveler health data and flexibilising mobility are growing.
The European Union has said it hopes to have its own “digital green pass” ready in time for the summer, with global airline body IATA announcing the rollout of a similar COVID-19 travel pass this spring.
Spain, the world’s second most visited country before the pandemic, plans to conduct its own pilot of so-called vaccine passports ahead of the summer, when it hopes to attract inoculated tourists.
Spain’s national infection rate, as measured over the past 14 days, rose to 168 cases per 100,000 people on Wednesday, up from 128 cases in mid-March, but still well below the 900-case peak seen in late January.
The health ministry registered 8,788 new cases, bringing the total to 3.33 million, while the death toll rose by 126 to 76,037.
(Reporting by Clara-Laeila Laudette, editing by Andrei Khalip and Angus MacSwan)