COVID Verification of Tourists: Is the Hospitality Sector Doing Much?

  • Richard Marley
  • March 24, 2021
  • 6 minutes read
  • 984

COVID-19 has been a big hassle for everyone except for those who adopted the new normal quickly. Although before the pandemic, digital solutions were common, the need for social distancing now demands a different setting. As the virus continues to spread, the tourism industry embraces COVID test verification as a mandatory requirement. Hotels, malls, airports and other public spaces are moving towards innovative ways to cater to the current global emergency. 

The blog discusses how hotels can practice safe tourist onboarding standards by offering virtual check-ins and how a comprehensive tool like Digital COVID Pass allows the hospitality industry to adhere to the new restrictions.  

Contactless Check-ins: The New Safety Mechanism

Checking into hotels in the COVID-struck age has been a particular concern for the hospitality sector. With digital solutions in place, tourists can get their identity and COVID PCR tests verified remotely without the hassle of manual verification on the hotel premises. This way, hotels can not only adhere to global health safety standards but also provide their customers with a pleasant and effortless experience. 

Remote Onboarding

Today, hotel booking sites allow customers to check-in through their mobile phones before visiting the hotel. It doesn’t matter if tourists are near their destinations or are about to leave their home, they can communicate with the hotel anytime. The hotel staff can acquire details about the tourist beforehand that allows them to prepare better. Details submitted during remote check-in can be verified once the visitor reaches the premises. 


Secure Channel

Tourists checking into hotels means they submit a lot of personal information including their name and credit card details. If this data is not kept safe, it could take a toll not only on the customer’s credit but the brand reputation as well. In this regard, self check-in solutions are used by hotels that offer end-to-end encryption to protect user’s data. These tools are integrated with the hotel management system where they can acquire customer details through a safe and secure channel.   

Touchless Kiosks

Today, most hotel receptions have installed a self check-in kiosk that ensures automated and safe admittance of guests. The fact that these devices do not need to be operated by hand makes them essential in verifying legitimate tourists while practising social distancing norms. Apart from simplifying the onboarding procedure, touchless kiosks can read credit cards. 

Identity Verification

While online hotel bookings may be a convenient way to make transactions for your destination tour, they may not always be safe. That’s why hotels invest a lot of resources in making tourist onboarding solutions efficient and reliable. Thanks to artificial intelligence, shady passengers are not able to bypass onboarding procedures with a fake COVID test or false passport ID. The contactless kiosks installed at the hotels are now powered by facial recognition technology that instantly verifies the tourist identity based on the information submitted during the virtual check-in. 

Digital COVID Pass – Elevating Tourist Experience

To resume tourist activities, the travel and hospitality sector needs to adopt an effective and reliable mechanism. Digital COVID Pass is a tourist verification solution that incorporates QR code authentication along with identity verification to make sure visitors arriving at hotels, cinemas, conferences and other public spaces are COVID-free and are not potential fraudsters. 

Verifying Covid Reports

Currently, visitors arriving at hotels need to take part in manual procedures for COVID report verification. Since the reports come with an MRZ or QR code that is used for user identification and document authenticity, it can take quite some time to understand these codes without an automated system. This directly impacts the customer experience because they have to wait for several hours. 

The COVID Pass addresses this problem by using OCR technology based on artificial intelligence to scan and extract information from passenger documents in real-time. The solution reads the QR code on the Covid reports to verify if they are older than three days or not – in which case the COVID test is not reliable. 

Digital covid pass

Document Authenticity

Oftentimes, fraudsters use sophisticated ways to get away with forged and synthetically created IDs. These documents could be either a passport needed on an airport terminal or hotel to check-in or a COVID test report that is a mandatory requirement for tourist onboarding these days at public places with a considerable audience. Digital COVID Pass performs a series of intelligent checks to determine if the document is  – missing important features such as a hologram or rainbow print – created using false information, or is possibly altered. 

Tourist Identification 

Hotels can use COVID Pass to identify and verify their customers. The solution installed at contactless kiosks allows visitors to enjoy a purposeful onboarding experience keeping intact the SOPS. AI-powered facial recognition technology matches the passengers/visitors facial identity against the information they provided during the virtual check-in before onboarding. The liveness detection feature also makes sure the user does not display a paper-based or still image of their face to bypass the system. This allows travel authorities and hotel staff to confirm they are not allowing any fraudster to onboard. 

To Wrap it Up …

The hospitality industry is faced with new COVID restrictions to verify all onboarding tourists and passengers. The requirements include verifying a PCR test for COVID, no older than 72 hours, to make sure tourists are not carrying the virus. Although hotels nowadays employ remote solutions to authenticate visitors beforehand, they often fall short of identity verification standards. Digital COVID Pass allows travel authorities, hotels, and personnel at public spaces to verify COVID reports as well as identity documents including passports and travel IDs for a seamless and secure tourist experience.