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Tampa International first airport in nation to offer all passengers COVID-19 tests

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Posted at 10:41 AM, Sep 29, 2020
and last updated 2020-09-29 17:52:46-04

TAMPA, Fla. — Tampa International announced on Tuesday that it will be the first airport in the country to offer two types of COVID-19 tests to all departing and arriving passengers.

TPA is partnering with BayCare for the pilot program. It will offer two types of FDA-approved COVID-19 tests, the Polymerase Chain Reaction (PCR) test or "gold standard" that takes 48 hours to get results, and the rapid antigen tests, which takes 10 to 15 minutes.

Testing will be available to any passenger seven days a week, between Oct. 1 and Oct. 31, from 8 a.m. to 2 p.m. inside the Main Terminal near the Airside F shuttle.

According to TPA, "all ticketed passengers who are flying or have flown within three days and can show proof of travel" can purchase a test. The PCR COVID-19 test costs $125 and the antigen test costs $57.

"At many destinations around the world, government health agencies are requiring travelers to provide a negative PCR test result to avoid quarantine or other restrictions upon arrival. Passengers departing from Tampa to states, countries or territories requiring negative PCR tests are advised to take the test three days before departure and can expect results within 48 hours," TPA said in a press release.

"As a gateway to the West Coast of Florida with a growing market for international travel, Tampa International Airport has a responsibility to explore safe, rapid and affordable ways to keep our travelers, their destinations and our community as safe and healthy as possible," TPA CEO Joe Lopano said. "We're thankful to our partners at BayCare in helping us create a pilot program that gives us a step in the right direction, as well as providing a valuable service to our passengers."

Tampa International first airport in nation to offer passengers COVID-19 tests