On June 24, 2020, Governor Ige announced
that a pre-travel testing program will be launched for out-of-state travelers to Hawaii. With proof of a valid negative COVID-19 test completed within 72 hours before arriving, visitors will not be subject to the 14-day quarantine
. This process is due to begin
August 1 September 1, October 1, October 15, 2020
The proposed requirements of the pre-travel COVID-19 testing are as follows:
- Must be conducted within 72-hours prior to arrival. The details are still to be determined, but the Hawaii Tourism Authority currently states that it is to be taken 72-hours prior to boarding your flight.
- Must be conducted at a testing location approved by the Hawaii State Department of Health. The DOH is in the process of developing this program, but originally stated that it would need to be a FDA-approved PCR test from a CLIA certified laboratory per Gov. Ige’s press release. Later, the Hawaii Tourism Authority page says that it is to be a Nucleic Acid Amplification Test (NAAT) from a certified Clinical Laboratory Improvement Amendment (CLIA) lab. By the time this process is implemented, other testing options may become available. Lt. Gov. Green mentioned that CVS is a national pharmacy that will very likely be an approved testing site. Officials are seeking other large testing partners similar to CVS as well as tests provided by private physicians. The state will establish contractual relationships with some of the national testing sites, such as CVS and Walgreens, to allow testing for travelers.
- Evidence of a negative test result must be provided upon arrival in Hawaii. Per Gov. Ige’s press release regarding this announcement. They anticipate that travelers can provide either a printed or emailed pre-test certification as evidence of a negative test result.
- The traveler is responsible for the cost of testing.
- If a traveler does not have their test results by the time they arrive in Hawaii, they will be required to go into quarantine until they receive a negative test result.
- Other details are still to be determined.
Additionally, upon arrival in Hawaii, all travelers will be required to submit a completed Safe Travels application. Temperature checks will be conducted. If a traveler has a temperature of 100.4°F (38°C) or higher and/or exhibits symptoms of COVID-19, the traveler will be subject to a secondary screening process.
Visitors arriving to Hawaii without a COVID-10 pre-test will continue to be subject to the mandatory 14-day quarantine.
In the June 24th press conference, Hawaii officials noted that the process of 72-hour, pre-travel testing is not perfect, but they are in agreement that it will greatly reduce the risk of spreading the virus within Hawaii.
Though not part of this pre-travel testing announcement, in the question and answer session, the governor was asked about travel corridors with other countries with low COVID-19 rates. He said that travel corridors are still being considered and that he is in initial discussions with Japan, South Korea, New Zealand and Australia.
Details still to be determined regarding Hawaii’s COVID-19 pre-testing program
As stated in the governor’s press conference, the pre-testing plan is still being detailed. Lt. Gov. Green said that more details of the plan will be announced in the coming weeks.
Just a few of the questions that will need to be answered:
– How much will the tests cost?
– What happens if someone tests positive for COVID-19 on their 72-hour, pre-travel test? Will they receive refunds or credits for airfare, accommodations and other travel expenses.
– What tests and testing sites will be approved for pre-testing?
– How exactly will the 72-hour window be defined? At departure? Upon arrival?
– What if the test results are not supplied within 72-hours and/or prior to the tourist’s flight? What would be the process for presenting a negative test result after arrival?
– Will a printed test result be required? Can a traveler present an emailed-test response?
– How feasible will it be to to take a test and receive the result within 72 hours or less?
– Will children need to be tested?
– When should residents get tested if they are taking short trips outside of the state?
Once again, very limited details were mentioned in this press conference. The key point is that the 72-hour, COVID-19 pre-testing program is due to begin
August 1 September 1, October 1, October 15, 2020.
As more details emerge, we will publish them. If you are not already subscribed to our free email newsletter, you can sign up for it at this link
Brief update: Per Gov. Ige
, the plan details will be announced and published sometime in August. In a press conference on August 6th, the governor indicated that details of the plan should be coming out in the following week.