- American will start offering the tests on Wednesday.
- The tests are meant to help travelers avoid quarantine requirements that could preclude them from booking.
- The at-home tests are $129 and ordered online.
American Airlines will start offering travelers $129 at-home Covid-19 tests, results that can help them avoid quarantines as long as two weeks.
The initiative, which starts Wednesday for travel beginning Saturday, is the latest from airlines to try to encourage bookings. Compounding the virus-induced slump in air travel are quarantine requirements abroad and within the U.S.
American said the testing plan is the first from a U.S. airline that focuses on domestic travel.
LetsGetChecked, the company providing the tests, recommends that travelers order their tests at least five days before their flight. Customers booked to any of the states that require arriving travelers to quarantine, including New York, Maryland and Massachusetts, take the nasal swab test at home. Once the test is received, results are expected within 48 hours, the company said.
Other airlines have also rolled out preflight testing. United Airlines in October started offering preflight tests to some Hawaii-bound passengers so they could avoid a two-week quarantine. In November, the airline began offering free tests on for flights from Newark, New Jersey, to London.