Home Travel Don’t Make The Same Mistake As Us When Taking A COVID Test To Get Back To The U.S.

Don’t Make The Same Mistake As Us When Taking A COVID Test To Get Back To The U.S.

by joeheg

When we traveled to Iceland, I decided to order a COVID self-test that we could do while there instead of finding somewhere to get a test during our trip. I paid $150 for a six-pack of Abbott’s BinaxNOW test from eMed so Sharon and I could get tested from our hotel room.

On our way back to Reykjavik, we returned for a night to stay at Hotel Laekur. I knew from our previous visit that the hotel had reliable Wi-Fi. It was more than good enough for us to do our COVID tests with online guidance.

I went first since I’d been through self-testing before. I logged into the eMed website with my NAVICA password and was connected with a representative. His first request was for me to hold my ID up to the webcam. I showed him my passport.

That’s when I discovered my mistake. The rep asked if I was testing for travel. I said that I was and then he asked if I booked my ticket using my full name. I said I most likely did because it matched my passport. He said that since my passport and my testing account didn’t exactly match, I could have problems.

His suggestion was to go back into the NAVICA app and add my middle name to the end of my first name (as there’s no middle name field on the app.) However, I’d need to stop our call and reconnect after I made the change.

I made the changes and logged back in and waited for a rep the second time.

When I went through the process, the second rep said she still did not see the name change. I had to clear out my browser cache and try again. So much for this being easier than going for a test.

I had been in Chrome this whole time, so decided to ditch that and logged in with my Firefox browser. Whomp-whomp, since eMed doesn’t support Firefox; only Edge, Chrome and Safari browsers.

On my fourth try using Safari, my updated info was in the system. I won’t go through the entire process but the nasal swab is the easiest part. Lifting your laptop to show you putting the swab into the card with the webcam definitely needs an extra set of hands.

After waiting 15 minutes, my test came back negative. It was now Sharon’s turn.

Since we knew better, she’d already gone into the NAVICA app on her phone and added her middle name.

When she logged in with her Chromebook, everything went smoothly. Except her rep insisted on seeing her do every part of the process which required me to hold the laptop while she closed the card on the swab.

If you’re considering using the eMed BinaxNOW antigen test to re-enter the U.S., make sure that the name on your account exactly matches your passport and ticket. As in, “including your middle name,” if needed. If not, correct it before you try to take your test. If not, be prepared to do some major tech support work before taking the test.

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This post first appeared on Your Mileage May Vary

11 comments

Tony August 3, 2021 - 9:23 am

Didn’t have my middle name. No issue getting back to the States from Spain.

Reply
joeheg August 3, 2021 - 9:32 am

It was the eMed rep who said it could be a problem. I imagine that’s because they’ve received reports from those affected. I’d prefer to avoid any pitfalls when traveling internationally, so I made the change

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Billy Bob August 3, 2021 - 9:30 am

My name on my tickets rarely matches my whole name on my passport. My ticket name doesn’t include my middle name, whereas my passport does.

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Quazi Bari August 3, 2021 - 1:52 pm

Same for me. Flying to Athens and Istanbul next week with BinaxCovid Test packet in tow. Only my passport has my middle name attached to the first name. My reservation and Navica app has just First and Last names, as is the case with many other apps requiring registration. Hope I don’t get stuck overseas!

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Ed August 3, 2021 - 9:49 am

I only hear bad stories about these video covid tests. I will do one at a regular pharmacy, tyvm.

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joeheg August 3, 2021 - 12:11 pm

The test was easy. I’m sure the need to follow the protocols is because of government rules allowing the tests to be used for re-entry to the US. Other people at our hotel had to leave at 7AM to drive into Reykjavik for their test. We spent the day sightseeing.

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Jd August 3, 2021 - 11:29 am

I’ve never used middle name on plane tickets, never an issue

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LKS August 3, 2021 - 12:22 pm

We used the same test coming back from Iceland to USA. No middle name in emed/abbott app so did not match passport, but rep did not make us add it and had no problems with the return flight as far as results being accepted.

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Amy J August 3, 2021 - 2:27 pm

I had an issue with Southwest Airlines flying from the US to Cancun since the airline didn’t have my middle name on the ticket. They had to manually change that before they would even check me in for the flight. Now I make sure all my airline tickets have my middle name as shown on my passport, just in case. Getting away with it a time or two doesn’t necessarily mean it’s legit. Right after 9/11, I flew with a corkscrew (and knife blade) in my carry-on three times before it was caught by security (it slipped my mind).

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Drew August 3, 2021 - 2:33 pm

Recommend taking the home test (or any test for that matter) at 3 days prior to departure. There’s no advantage to wait until the day before. In the event event you do test positive, you allow yourself time to “scramble” to retest or to start the quarantine clock sooner than if you waited until the day before.

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Gunnard August 8, 2021 - 11:14 pm

welp. current waiting time now is 356 minutes for some people. getting a test in the city or airport now makes sense unless you like staring in front of a webcam.

Reply

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