Hawaii Governor Announces Pre-Travel Testing Alternative to Quarantine

Hawaii Gov David Ige has announced his state plans to implement a pre-travel testing option for travelers from August 1, as an alternative to the 14-day quarantine for those entering the state.

The announcement would allow travelers who test negative for COVID-19 prior to arrival to bypass the state’s mandatory 14-day self-quarantine for out-of state passengers. The state has suffered severe economic damage from a reduction of tourism during the pandemic.

Ige made the announcement at Daniel K Inouye International Airport in Honolulu, where he appeared with other state officials. The change was announced on the same day New York, New Jersey, and Connecticut said they would require travelers from states with high coronavirus rates to quarantine for two weeks.

Ige said Hawaii went from the lowest rate of unemployment in the country to the second-highest “in a matter of weeks.” According to the Star Advertiser, tourism to Hawaii “began free-falling after Ige ordered a 14-day travel quarantine for out-of-state arrivals starting March 26, and expanded it to interisland travelers April 1.”

The quarantine would remain in place for those who choose not to take a test, Ige said, adding that temperature checks and screenings would continue. Credit: Governor David Ige via Storyful