Bastian also welcomed new U.S. COVID-19 testing requirements for international travel, which took effect this week. “By putting those policies in place, we at least now have a framework to give people confidence that the borders can be reopened safely,” he said.
Delta is working on a technology platform for travelers to easily show their vaccination records, should that become required.
Biden’s executive order also directed the U.S. Transportation Secretary to consider additional public health measures for domestic travel.
When asked whether vaccines should be required for flights within the United States, Bastian said: “I don’t think for domestic travel it’s practical” to require vaccines.
He said Delta alone is carrying more than a million passengers a week. But, he added, “For international, I think it’s probably going to be required by the international authorities in terms of opening up borders.”
There are reports this week that the Biden administration is looking into requiring COVID-19 testing for domestic flights.
Tori Barnes, executive vice president of public affairs and policy for the industry group U.S. Travel Association, said domestic flight testing is “an extremely problematic proposition.” She said it would be “very difficult to implement and enforce,” because of the cost and limited availability of testing.