testFRWD (“tFRWD”), the startup providing the first do-it-yourself, mouthwash-based, COVID-19 testing solution, has partnered with the leading aviation-strategy firm, SimpliFlying to distribute tFRWD’s 99-percent accurate solution to the travel industry for passengers to properly self-test before departing on their travels. The solution will be distributed through SimpliFlying’s SimpliTested initiative, a program designed to rebuild air travel responsibly, and via tFRWD’s other partnerships.
COVID-19 has taken a massive toll on the airline industry, with IATA estimating the industry will have lost more than $118.5 billion in 2020 and $38 billion in 2021. The travel industry now faces a partially vaccinated world, in which vaccines and testing will be utilized symbiotically. As it stands, airports and airlines lack the infrastructure to test the enormous volume of passengers in a method that is both clinically adequate and expeditious within reasonable parameters. Existing solutions for testing passengers in transit are wildly inconsistent and don’t deliver results accurate enough to justify proper COVID safety clearance. With the effects of the pandemic expected to last for at least a year while vaccines are gradually administered, tFRWD spearheads the effort to restore safe travel by tackling these challenges.
tFRWD alleviates the burden of mass testing on airlines and airports by giving passengers the capacity to properly self-test and receive results that are 99 percent accurate. Through partnerships with hundreds of laboratories, pharmaceutical retailers, couriers, and SimpliFlying, tFRWD ensures self-testing individuals are able to receive a test kit from the airlines or purchase one affordably. Testers can then send their mouthwash-based, PCR test to a local lab via UPS; place it in a drop box at a retail partner stores; self-test at a participating airport test suite, or even pick a kit up at duty-free, and receive results within 24-48 hours. An individual follows a series of user-intuitive steps to self-test. Upon receiving a negative test result, the passenger can show it via the tFRWD app at check-in/border control.
The whole process of collection and result delivery is digitalized and enhanced by a digital fingerprint for ID verification algorithm. This enables tFRWD to connect entry control systems globally to the tFRWD IT system, providing a centralised platform for automated health checks at airports, venues, events and other players in the tourism sector. This also opens a door to integrate tFRWD test results in digital health pass apps and vice versa.
“The airline industry has taken one of the strongest punches from the COVID-19 pandemic and continues to suffer in light of the absence of an effective solution,” says Veit-Ander Aichbichler, Co-Founder and CEO of tFRWD. “Our solution empowers airlines to deliver passengers to destinations with minimal risk of spreading the COVID-19 infection.”
“tFRWD is proud to be leading the way in restoring safe air travel to the world with its hyper-accurate COVID testing solution,” says Hennes Weiss, Founder and CMO of tFRWD. “Given the longevity of the pandemic and its lasting effect on air travel, solutions like tFRWD aren’t likely to go away any time soon.”
“The travel industry needs a consistent testing standard that is accurate, affordable and easy to self-administer. testFRWD disrupts and drastically improves COVID testing for travel,” says Shashank Nigam, CEO of SimpliFlying. “Instead of the uncomfortable and error-prone deep swab method, it utilises mouthwash. This instantly makes it more appealing to the average traveller. Then airports and airlines can deploy it wherever the customer wants to take the test. It can be sent to the passenger’s home, pre-flight. It can be bought and dropped off in retail outlets, or it can be done in testing suites at the airport itself. The overall result is a decrease in cost, and an increase in accuracy and peace of mind.”
“Travel can be kickstarted by offering simple testing methods that ensure health & safety, without disrupting the customer journey. We need to ensure that key elements of the passenger experience are preserved and using a mail-in PCR test like that being offered by SimpliTested allows seamless travel.” said Ben Baldanza, an advisor to SimpliTested and the former CEO of Spirit Airlines in the U.S.