travel

How vaccine passports for global travel will work

19 Comments
By KELVIN CHAN

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19 Comments
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These apps are short term solutions.

The long term solution is to put all vaccination information into your Government issued passport chip.

For those that are old enough to remember, all the information on the WHO International Certificate of Vaccination or Prophylaxis should also be placed on the chip. Since a chipped passport will be required for entry into many countries within the next 10 years, this automates and simplifies the whole immigration process.

-2 ( +4 / -6 )

A great idea but both my in-laws and wife in Japan and all my family members in the UK have been vaccinated. None of them were given any certificates or proof of vaccination. Will all those already vaccinated have to go back to the clinics to get their vaccine history confirmed and entered onto a card? Good luck in Japan.

2 ( +4 / -2 )

But the multiple efforts underscore the lack of one central international system to electronically verify vaccination status

You really want all your personal information loaded into a global database?

1 ( +5 / -4 )

It isn't much of a privacy issue because your information will already be held on dozens of systems and has probably been lifted several times by hackers already. Our names, addresses and phone numbers used to appear in telephone directories. Our photos and e-mail addresses often appear on the websites of entities we work for. We don't have much privacy anymore.

It is a tracking issue. OK, governments already track people entering and leaving the country, share data with airlines and retain records. But smartphones are often lost and stolen, and once material is on them, you can bet GAFA will find a way to accidentally slurp it the way they accidentally do.

More of a problem is that the tech is flaky. What if you arrive after a 12 hour flight and your phone crashes when you turn it on? I doubt phoning Google customer support at Passport Control is going to help.

These apps will need to work on a smartphone with no connection to the net and no working SIM card, as different countries use different systems. My smartphone has never had a SIM card in it. I use it on WiFi at home and I pick up my pocket WiFi at the PO at Narita, well past passport control.

Ideally you could apply for a chip on a sticker that you peel off and stick on a page of your passport. Your local GP could scan the chip to update your vaccination status from medical records. Passport control could scan the chip on departure and arrival.

Personally, I would pay extra for a paper version. Tech always goes wrong when you least want it to, and global standards are as rare as pregnant unicorns.

5 ( +6 / -1 )

One question I have not been able to find an answer to is: what is the procedure for me when I arrive in Japan?

I am fully vaccinated and a permanent resident of Japan, do i have to quarantine ? Can I use public transport ?

0 ( +2 / -2 )

“If done correctly, this doesn’t bring an additional level of privacy risk because you’re just putting in a credential status of yes or no,”

These people don't get it. Being forced or compelled to provide any information about your medical history is a violation of privacy laws. This isn't about hackers getting your private information. Having vaccine passports will open the door for all sorts of discrimination.

-1 ( +4 / -5 )

One question I have not been able to find an answer to is: what is the procedure for me when I arrive in Japan?

I am fully vaccinated and a permanent resident of Japan, do i have to quarantine ? Can I use public transport ?

At present, yes, you do have to quarantine, and no, you cannot use public transportation upon arrival nor during your quarantine period.

4 ( +4 / -0 )

@GBR48, thank you for verbalizing some of my worries. I only use my J phone on wifi ('plane mode) at home in the UK and I doubt it would work at Heathrow. My UK phone is pay-as-you-go and O2 always put a stop on the account and take the remaining 30-40 GBP in it after six months out of the country.

@PaulGeiger. You probably still have to follow the J govt guidelines to the letter as I cannot imagine they have made any provisions yet for people who may have been vaccinated.

0 ( +0 / -0 )

Typo. Should read ‘won’t work”

0 ( +2 / -2 )

Vaccination passports are a polarizing topic, with online discussion highlighting unfounded fears that they’ll be used to control people, restrict freedom and erode privacy

"Restrict Freedom", so unless you have their passport you cannot move around , eventually they want it at concerts , bars etc, ......................enough of this tracking people and keeping records.

Where i choose to go , and choose to do is none of anyone's business but mine.

I have a passport issued by the country of birth, I do not want to have another one , and then have to pay for a smart phone to show others I have vaccine passport.

0 ( +3 / -3 )

Maybe they won’t work if enough people figure out that COVID passports are part of an authoritarian power grab, an sabotage the system or refuse to comply.

Remember, governments are not your friends. They attract the sorts of people who should not be allowed anywhere near the reins of power. They perform a few useful functions but must be kept on a short leash, least they forget they’re here to serve us, not the other way around.

1 ( +3 / -2 )

Why can't the Doctors just stamp our real passports that we had the shot?

4 ( +4 / -0 )

Paul Geiger.....

That's a yes, you will have to quarantine and NO, you cannot use public transport. Being vaccinated makes zero difference here. Sorry.

0 ( +0 / -0 )

A Covid vax passport in Japan ? It is the best joke of the week

1 ( +1 / -0 )

These people don't get it. Being forced or compelled to provide any information about your medical history is a violation of privacy laws.

That sounds so pat and straight forward but you do not have an inherent right to fly as a passenger on an airplane. You pay for the service the airline is providing you and in exchange you agree to abide by their rules. An airline has every right to deny you service if you cannot prove you will not infect other passengers with a pandemic. The airline could be sued to allowing an unvaccinated passenger on board who subsequently infects other passengers. Moreover foreign governments are not somehow obliged to let you enter their country for any of a wide variety of reasons including proving you have been vaccinated. I had to carry a Yellow Card for foreign travel to prove I had certain vaccinations otherwise some nations I wished to visit would have turned me away. Crying "privacy" isn't going to move a government intent on keeping diseases outside of their borders, and rightfully so.

1 ( +2 / -1 )

I wonder what airlines are going to do in states like Alabamy and Florida where their governors have banned vaccine passports? It would would be entirely appropriate if the airlines in those states simply cancelled all international flights originating from those states.

-1 ( +0 / -1 )

We will have a small certificate once we get both jabs.

0 ( +0 / -0 )

Notice on COVID-19 vaccination

https://www.mhlw.go.jp/content/000759274.pdf

0 ( +0 / -0 )

If we're going to rely on vaccine passports, then there won't be any Japanese tourists until 2023 at the earliest.

0 ( +0 / -0 )

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