United And Abbott Offer At-Home COVID-19 Testing to International Passengers
United Airlines has partnered with Abbott pharmaceutical company to offer CDC-approved, self-administered COVID-19 tests to international passengers.
Abbott said that passengers flying on United can place an order for its BinaxNow test in advance and then bring it with them to an international destination. Earlier this week, both companies said that international travelers can use the BinaxNOW™ COVID-19 Home Test along with Abbott's NAVICA app in a bid to make the global travel experience more streamlined.
Before returning home, the passengers can "conduct the test with the digital health proctor, get their health pass, and either upload it to United's Travel Ready site…or show it at the airport when they check in," according to an Abbott spokesperson. The at-home test kits come in a pack of six and cost $150, plus tax and shipping, and can be purchased from the eMed health platform.
News of the partnership comes shortly after the CDC announced new guidelines that allow travelers to self-administer a rapid antigen test under the supervision of a telehealth service.
In a press release shared by United and Abbott, CDC Director Rochelle Walensky said: "We appreciate the private sector proactively helping travelers have access to easy, reliable COVID-19 test options. Comprehensive testing that is easy, rapid, accurate and trusted is a fundamental strategy for preventing the spread of COVID-19."
Toby Enqvist, chief customer officer at United, said: "We want to give our customers greater peace of mind that when they travel internationally, they'll be able to return to the U.S quickly and safely. The Abbott BinaxNOW Home Test meets CDC requirements and, along with our partners at Abbott, United is doubling down on our commitment to make international travel as safe and convenient as possible by offering an easy testing option when customers are ready to return to the United States."