Air Canada today announced the introduction of new testing products, including portable self-administered COVID-19 molecular and antigen test kits, through a partnership with Switch Health, a Canadian-based healthcare company. Using the Switch Health COVID-19 RT-LAMP Kit, customers can test themselves while travelling abroad prior to their flight to Canada to meet Government of Canada testing entry requirements without the need to visit a foreign COVID-19 testing clinic. These tests are conducted under the remote supervision of a Telehealth professional from Switch Health and include an electronic report suitable for travel.
“Air Canada is a leader in adopting and implementing science-based safety measures to simplify our customers’ journey,” said Mark Nasr, Senior Vice President, Products Marketing & eCommerce at Air Canada. “Together with Switch Health, we are pleased to offer our customers the most comprehensive range of travel testing options that will make travelling abroad easier and more predictable. Switch Health also seamlessly integrates into Air Canada’s digital tool allowing customers to securely submit their COVID-19 test results and records of vaccination, further simplifying the travel experience.”
“At Switch Health, we pride ourselves on keeping Canadians safe and empowering them to make decisions concerning their health at their convenience through cutting edge, decentralized diagnostics and patient-focused digital solutions,” said Dilian Stoyanov, Chief Executive Officer at Switch Health. “Offering these COVID-19 tests will help get Canadians back to their favourite activities – like global air travel with Air Canada – safely, reliably and at their convenience.”
Testing for travel
Customers flying to Canada are currently required by the Government of Canada to present a negative molecular test taken within 72 hours of their flight. Switch Health’s new portable self administered test kit, officially called the Switch Health RT-LAMP Test Kit, can be taken by customers on their trips and used to satisfy this requirement without the need to visit a foreign testing facility. Air Canada is Switch Health’s launch partner for these new tests, with limited quantities initially available for Aeroplan Members.
The RT-LAMP test is one of several ways Air Canada is offering practical solutions to ease customer experience and reduce the inconvenience related to the current pre-departure testing requirements. Other COVID-19 testing options include convenient travel testing clinics, a self administered RT-PCR collection kit and a portable self-administered antigen kit containing two tests which is accepted by many countries such as the United States.
These solutions are designed to ease the travel experience until the mandatory pre-departure test requirement evolves for fully vaccinated travellers. The Government’s COVID-19 Testing and Screening Expert Advisory Panel recommends the removal of pre-departure testing for fully vaccinated travellers, acknowledging that testing at both departure and arrival is excessive.
Preferred pricing for Aeroplan Members
Aeroplan Members have exclusive access to preferred pricing on all Switch Health testing products. Aeroplan preferred pricing for the portable antigen test kit start at $79 plus applicable taxes (one kit includes two tests), and the portable RT-LAMP test kit start at $149 plus applicable taxes. Members also earn 1,000 Aeroplan points on RT-PCR tests and 500 Aeroplan points on RT-LAMP test kits and antigen tests. Members can also redeem their Aeroplan points through the Aeroplan eStore to cover the cost of the test kits. Not an Aeroplan Member? Anyone can join for free.
Travelling internationally? Visit our Travel Ready Hub to easily and conveniently obtain such information as necessary travel documentation, COVID-19 test requirements and country travel restrictions for any global destination.
About Air Canada
Air Canada is Canada’s largest domestic and international airline and, in 2019, was among the top 20 largest airlines in the world. It is Canada’s flag carrier and a founding member of Star Alliance, the world’s most comprehensive air transportation network. Air Canada is the only international network carrier in North America to receive a Four-Star ranking according to independent U.K. research firm Skytrax. In 2020, Air Canada was named Global Traveler’s Best Airline in North America for the second straight year. In January 2021, Air Canada received APEX’s Diamond Status Certification for the Air Canada CleanCare+ biosafety program for managing COVID-19, the only airline in Canada to attain the highest APEX ranking. Air Canada has also committed to a net zero emissions goal from all global operations by 2050.
About Switch Health
Switch Health Holdings Inc. (Switch Health) is an industry leader that is transforming how healthcare is delivered in Canada through cutting edge decentralized next generation diagnostics and patient-focused digital solutions. Switch Health developed an end-to-end, innovative, and accessible testing-solution in Canada’s fight against COVID-19, with its at-home and mobile collection kits to test Canadians safely, rapidly, and reliably for COVID-19. Switch Health’s services are driven by its secure, proprietary patient portal, ASMO. Switch Health offers services in over 200 languages from the comfort peoples’ homes or workplaces, with the guidance of trusted Telehealth professionals and the delivery of results through and some of Canada’s top laboratories.
Featured image credited to Air Canada