Coronavirus COVID-19 Hawaii update for May 5, 2020

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We’ve been closely monitoring all Hawaii news, announcements, and research and here is the latest information addressing some big questions related to the Coronavirus COVID-19 Hawaii travel.

When will Hawaii reopen for visitors?

We know that so many of our readers are anxious to know when Hawaii will be reopened for tourism. Unfortunately, the situation is still unclear.

We’re keeping a close eye for any tourism-related news and there has been some recent news speculating the reopening of tourism:

  • Tourism leaders urge state recovery plan from the Honolulu Star-Advertiser. This article discusses the need for protocols to be put in place to facilitate the reopening of tourism in a manner that’s safe for the community, workforce and visitor. The individuals interviewed seem to indicate that there’s uncertainty around when the 14-day quarantine or any quarantine will be lifted even though it is currently in effect until June 30, 2020. They are recommending:

“COVID-19 passenger testing and apps allowing for contact tracing available before tourism reopens. But if that’s months out, they urge leaders to consider allowing Hawaii’s visitor industry to reopen sooner under new safety protocols — everything from extra cleaning to social-distancing measures like conducting more online business, blocking out hotel rooms or floors to space out customers, and reconfiguring restaurants and other common areas.”

“UHERO says the most optimistic models show tourists being welcomed back at the end of July. But Bonham cautions that is the best-case scenario and depends heavily on screening, testing and tracing abilities of the state.”

As you can see, the situation is hypothetical at the moment. Nobody knows when it is safe to plan a Hawaii vacation. We know that this is frustrating for everyone. At least there is some glimmer of hope in that tourism officials are discussing reopening and starting to formulate ideas towards those plans. We’re hoping that the situation will become more clear as we progress through May.

What the hotels are “saying” about reopening?

We were interested in seeing what some of the major hotels are planning for reopening and when they are accepting reservations. Bear in mind that all the following information is very much subject to change. Here’s a sampling of what we found from some of the largest hotels on each of the four major Hawaiian islands when we checked on May 5th:

Hilton Hawaiian Village (Waikiki, Oahu) – closed, but accepting reservations starting June 1, 2020. Link to their COVID-19 update page.

Disney Aulani (Ko Olina, Oahu) – closed until further notice. Link to their travel advisory message.

Four Seasons Oahu (Ko Olina, Oahu) – closed until June 1, 2020. Link to their homepage which has a statement about their opening status with regards to COVID-19.

Turtle Bay Resort (on North Shore of Oahu) – closed through June 30, 2020. Link to their COVID-19 update page.

Grand Hyatt Kauai (Poipu, Kauai) – closed now and accepting reservations starting June 1, 2020. Link to their homepage with their COVID-19 statements.

Grand Wailea (Wailea, Maui) – The first reservations we could find are starting July 1, 2020. Link to the blanket corporate statement regarding their response to COVID-19.

Hyatt Regency Maui – closed, but accepting reservations starting May 24, 2020. (Note that the current 14-day quarantine order is in effect through May 31, 2020.)  Link to their homepage with their COVID-19 statement/policies.

Hilton Waikoloa Village (Waikoloa, Hawaii (Big) Island) – closed, but accepting reservations starting June 1, 2020. Link to their COVID-19 advisory page.

So, from this sampling of some of the largest hotels in Hawaii, we see hotels beginning to accept reservations as soon as May 24 and as late as July 1, 2020.

Once again, all those dates are subject to change.

Is the Coronavirus COVID-19 coming under control in Hawaii?

The good news is that yes, the curve has flattened! In recent days there have only been one or two new cases per day across the entire state. As of data reported through midday May 4, 2020, a cumulative total of 621 cases have been identified with 548 of those being released from isolation. On the island of Kauai, they’ve had a total of 21 cases and all of them have been released from isolation.

Just a reminder:

Hawaii continues their mandatory 14-day quarantine of all incoming visitors and residents. It is not recommended that visitors travel to Hawaii at this time. The current quarantine order is in effect until June 30, 2020. Government officials haven’t indicated if there may be an extension of that quarantine or perhaps a different quarantine duration after June 30, 2020. We’ll continue to watch and see what unfolds.

This situation is very much evolving and subject to change. Check our homepage, GoVisitHawaii.com, for ongoing updates.

9 comments
  1. We cancelled our May trip from Florida to HNL and thinking of rebooking for Mid September….5 of us traveling….
    Does it appear that it will be good to schedule in September so we can enjoy Waikiki.

  2. The problem may be options for activities.Many businesses and tours etc will be going out of business.Selection of activities will be fewer.Also,sanitary protocols will still be in the early stages,so moving around restaurants and bars will be monitored closely.Once tourists are allowed in,Covid19 numbers may go up,and restrictions may again be implemented.Maui for instance,cannot handle a large outbreak at their hospital,nor could many other Island hospitals.So you could be stuck once you come if you hit an upward swing of Covid19…..If things open in July for tourism,September could be that time where there is a spike….That’s the balancing act for an island,if numbers go up with arrival of tourists,the hospitals cannot function,we don’t have anywhere to send patients.So my advice……decide if you want a worry free vacation,if you do,I’d wait until next summer.If you want to take a chance and have less activities and maybe more inconvenience with outings,come on your scheduled trip.Just depends on what type of experience you expect. We are all facing the new way of life,same for Hawaii,we will have a trial and error period,fewer tourists will make that transition easier for the people that live here.Fewer tourists makes life more manageable for the people of Hawaii,especially if Covid19 numbers start to go up with tourist arrivals,that’s what we can’t handle.
    If it was me,I’d wait….I’d want to have a smooth running vacation and not worry about services that may or may not be available,I’d want a smooth system in place that works for my safety,and that of my family. Vacations cost a lot of money,and I’d want to get my monies worth and have a worry free vacation.Plus,I wouldn’t want to be in a plane with potentially sick people then get stuck in Hawaii…..health care isn’t the greatest…Maui Hospital is close to 138 doctors low….so take all of this into consideration.I hope you enjoy your trip whenever you decide to come.

  3. Thanks for your input. I suppose we should wait and see what the future months bring. I’ve visited twice before and very disappointed that my brother, his wife and a friend of my husband and I had to cancel as they had not had the luxury of visiting Oahu, Waikiki etc…… I sure hope this winds down in the next few months.

    Be safe!

  4. Thank you for the information, we are scheduled to be in Hawaii, June 24th – July 1st, do you think it will be worth the trip or should we re-schedule?

    1. It’s really hard to know right now.

      If you wanted to be on the safe side, you may want to learn your options for postponing, just in case.

  5. We are scheduled to come Jul 20th-29th. We mostly do snorkeling and site seeing and cook in the Condo. Do you think this is something we will still be able to do even if places are still closed down?

    1. It’s hard to say one way or the other. The biggest question is will there be testing in place between now and then which would enable the 14-day quarantine to be lifted.

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