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08/19/2021

Walmart, Albertsons partner with United Airlines for COVID-19 testing

Dan Berthiaume
Senior Editor, Technology
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United Airlines customers can now directly book COVID-19 tests at participating Walmart and Albertsons locations.

Customers of the airline can now book COVID-19 testing appointments at more than 3,800 total testing providers powered by Accenture technology and the CLX Health TrustAssure network, including more than 3,000 Walmart and Albertsons stores, via the United website and app. Results will be delivered within four to 48 hours of a test and directly submitted to United's website and mobile app to be reviewed for a customer’s flight.

Through United's online Travel Ready Center, customers can view a list of localized, eligible COVID testing locations, now including select Albertsons and Walmart locations, as well as additional drugstores, pharmacy chains, and local healthcare providers across the country. Customers can then select their preferred location and schedule an appointment directly through United's website and mobile app.

Once the test is reviewed, customers will see a status indicator informing them that they are "travel-ready" and can receive their mobile boarding pass. United plans to continue to expand its offering, including adding international testing sites for customers flying to the U.S. Limited personal customer data is involved.

Walmart began offering in-store COVID-19 tests for first responders and healthcare workers who had potentially been exposed to COVID-19 in March 2020, and has since made tests widely available for anyone who wants one. In June, the retailer began providing a free, secure digital wallet that enables consumers to own and share their health information, starting with their COVID-19 vaccine record.

[Read More: Walmart provides secure digital record for COVID-19 vaccinations]

Albertsons expanded its range of COVID-19 services, including over-the-counter rapid COVID-19 testing, in July 2021.

"United continues to deliver solutions that make it simple for customers to understand and meet all testing and vaccination requirements directly through our award-winning digital channels," said Linda Jojo, United executive VP for technology and chief digital officer. "As more Americans resume international travel, this enhancement to our mobile app and website will give our customers confidence and peace-of-mind knowing they have access to all of the information and services they need right in the palm of their hand or on their laptop."

"At Albertsons Companies, we are always seeking convenient solutions for our customers, especially during the COVID-19 pandemic. Our partnership with United Airlines, to provide access to pre-travel COVID testing, is just another example of this intent," said Omer Gajial, Albertsons Companies senior VP of pharmacy and health. "With our integrated testing solution, our customers can easily schedule their COVID-19 test at one of our convenient store locations, and results are seamlessly and confidentially delivered to United Airlines."

"Together with United, Albertsons and Walmart, we innovated at speed and scale to help implement a solution for United's customers, creating a system designed to give them greater support and confidence to navigate the new complexities introduced as a result of COVID-19," said Emily Weiss, global lead of Accenture's travel industry group.

“The domestic expansion of our TrustAssure network of premier national retail partners supporting COVID-19 testing, including Albertsons and Walmart locations in the United States, will provide travelers a multitude of choices virtually anywhere in the country to help them meet their travel requirements," said Joseph Gonzalez, chief strategy officer, CLX Health.

Albertsons operates 2,277 retail stores with 1,725 pharmacies, 400 associated fuel centers, 22 dedicated distribution centers and 20 manufacturing facilities. The company’s stores predominantly operate under the Albertsons, Safeway, Vons, Pavilions, Randalls, Tom Thumb, Carrs, Jewel-Osco, Acme, Shaw’s, Star Market, United Supermarkets, Kings Food Markets and Haggen banners

Walmart operates about 11,500 stores in 27 countries.