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SmartTravel from Veridos implements new ICAO recommendations for digital travel authorizations

In its new technical report, the ICAO makes recommendations for the design of digital travel authorizations. This approach reduces the use of paper-based forms and processes and, for instance, speeds up the verification of visa-exempt foreign nationals who have to provide certain information when entering specific countries.

With SmartTravel from Veridos public authorities can adopt the ICAO guidelines through a quick and flexible implementation process.

The International Civil Aviation Organization (ICAO) has published a new Technical Report for Digital Travel Authorization (DTA). The report’s recommendations and specifications lay the foundation for further global harmonization and standardization of digital travel authorizations, which can be used, for example, in a travel authorization program for visa-exempt foreign nationals.

Among other things, the report outlines the data that public authorities need to request from a traveler for a DTA application, as well as the information that should be included in the permits issued. It also specifies a DTA profile for a so-called “Visible Digital Seal for Non-Constrained Environments” (VDS-NC).

This is a two-dimensional barcode that contains personal and travel-related data such as duration of stay or purpose of travel. This data is stored and digitally signed in the 2D barcode and can be securely read and verified by border officials and airline personnel for entry into a country.

With Veridos SmartTravel, an existing solution for digital travel authorizations, authorities can implement the new ICAO recommendations and specifications immediately. The solution includes a web portal for travel authorization applications and electronic payments, as well as a backend for reviewing applications and issuing digital travel authorizations, including the ICAO-compliant VDS-NC. It also offers verification scanner software for reading the VDS, which can be deployed on both stationary and mobile devices.

“The new ICAO Technical Report is an important step towards digital travel authorizations that are globally consistent and state-of-the-art,” says Xavier Prost, Head of Product Management at Veridos. “With our flexibly configurable SmartTravel solution, authorities can design their digital travel authorization process in line with the new guidelines. In doing so, they are completely future-proof, because the solution can adapt to any ICAO changes, as well as to any new individual requirements that may arise.”