One of the biggest headaches of cruising now is navigating the pre-embarkation health screening, which often includes required checks of COVID-19 vaccination documentation, proof of negative testing and citizenship documentation.
To streamline the process, some cruise lines are turning to the VeriFly app, a secure and free digital health app that lets guests upload vaccination and test records and complete pre-boarding health screenings before they depart.
Cruisers can eliminate the stress of travel with the pre-downloaded VeriFly app (however, cruisers should always check with their cruise line to confirm required health documentation required at boarding).
The app is used in the aviation and travel industry (American Airlines, Alaska, Iberia and British Airways are a few of the carriers that use it, along with other oneworld Carriers) to streamline the documentation process needed for passengers to check in for their flights. Using that same technology for documentation checks for cruises only makes sense.
VeriFly is an app developed by Daon that lets users digitally store their vaccine and testing records. The VeriFly app tracks the health requirements of participating destinations and travel providers.
The app then allows travelers to access and download the required documentation and to create digital health passes that can be quickly scanned by participating airlines, cruise lines, hotel destinations and others who are part of the network.
Carnival Cruise Line, Holland America and Viking all have partnerships with the company to allow guests to use the app to speed up check-in, which Carnival said can cut in the time it takes for passengers to embark successfully in half.
"VeriFly helps our guests easily and securely complete pre-embarkation tasks right from their smartphone," said Carnival Cruise Line president Christine Duffy. "Guests can save time at the port and get on board faster by completing the process via VeriFly."
The VeriFly app download makes it easy for cruisers to access expedited check-in. Log in to the app to utilize its features and add your trip with cruise lines, like the Holland America Login and Carnival VeriFly.
After you download the app, VeriFly's prompts will guide you to take a selfie and fill in your personal information. Once you have created an account, you can set up passes by searching for your cruise line, airline or destination.
The app guides you through the requirements for that trip and verifies your documentation, then generates a mobile pass or QR code that you can present instead of paperwork at check-in. The VeriFly app can be quickly scanned, and passes are accessible on your phone whether you are on or offline.
Carnival Cruise Line, Holland America Line, Seabourn, P&O Cruises (Australia), and Viking currently use VeriFly. Holland America launched VeriFly onboard Rotterdam in March 2022 and rolled it out as an option for providing test, vaccine and health questionnaires this month in all U.S., Canadian and European homeports.
VeriFly for Carnival Cruise Line allows travelers to verify vaccines, testing and other health records for passengers on all ships in all U.S. homeports. Carnival VeriFly helps cruisers get on board quicker with fewer roadblocks during check-in. Viking uses the app to verify guests’ vaccination status.
While using VeriFly for Carnival Cruise and other cruise lines speeds up the boarding process, travelers may still be asked for paper documents to verify certain information. We recommend traveling with both the VeriFly app and hard copies of important documents.
VeriFly says they will verify documents within 24 hours. If there are problems, the company said they will contact users directly. It also offers a priority review service to get vaccine and testing information validated in 15 minutes for a low cost and also offers a reasonable group rate.
Travelers who pay for the priority review service can expect an automatic refund if their documents aren’t approved and issued passes within 15 minutes.
VeriFly says the app meets strict privacy and data protection regulations, including Europe’s strict GDR rules. The VeriFly app download gives users complete control of their data, and the company says it will eliminate all of your data immediately if you decide to stop using the app.
The company is a division of Daon, which has been creating digital identity systems for governments, companies and organizations for over 20 years.
While the app can expedite check-in for travelers, it’s not required during embarkation. Cruisers who wish to use the app can speed up their check-in times and make their documentation easily accessible with the VeriFly app download.
Yes, you should always have hard copies with you in case of technological glitches. Bring paper copies of your proof of vaccination, proof of negative test and proof of citizenship, as local officials sometimes require these.
Cruise Critic members report having their physical documentation validated, even when using the VeriFly app. "I used this app when flying back from Mexico per the directions of the airline,” writes Cruise Critic member klfrodo. “I still had to show hard copies of everything."