An Irish coronavirus testing company has teamed up with American Airlines to launch a new pre-flight COVID-19 testing program that could kickstart international tourism.
LetsGetChecked will begin offering a home coronavirus testing program for passengers traveling from Dallas Fort Worth to Hawaii, which will be rolled out on other routes if the trial program is deemed successful.
The program is part of an initiative from the airline that could lead to more convenient international travel and tourism during the COVID-19 pandemic.
As part of the program, LetsGetChecked will provide pre-flight coronavirus testing at home that will be overseen by a medical professional online.
Testing must be completed by passengers within 72 hours of a flight and any passenger that tests negative will be exempt from a country's 14-day quarantine rule.
Passengers can also take advantage of in-person testing and rapid testing at the airport - both carried out through a company called CareNow - as part of the American Airlines program.
LetsGetChecked's test uses a nasal swab polymerase chain reaction (PCR) analysis in a laboratory to check for the presence of the coronavirus.
We’re partnering with @AmericanAir to get passengers on select routes our at-home COVID-19 test! ✈️
We’re proud to support proactive safety measures as part of their pre-flight testing program to aid customer health, while helping to reopen markets to tourism. 🌴 pic.twitter.com/aygBnWDIYC— LetsGetChecked (@LetsGetChecked) October 2, 2020
The Irish company, which initially provided sexual health tests when it was founded in 2015, began selling its home COVID-19 test in the United States in May after receiving "emergency use" approval from the Food and Drink Administration (FDA).
The company employs around 250 people between offices in New York and Dublin and raised $71 million in a funding round in May ahead of its move into COVID-19 testing, according to the Irish Times.
LetsGetChecked has been offering a two-part coronavirus test for $119; it says that its blood test offers immediate results, while its lab tests return results in 24 hours. The results for its pre-flight testing are expected to take 48 hours.
LetsGetChecked is also offering pre-flight testing for passengers traveling from Miami to Costa Rica with American Airlines as the airline attempts to open up international travel without the need for quarantining.