It’s finally official: A pre-test or proof of vaccine is no longer required for inter-island travel to Hawaii, marking another milestone in the state’s COVID-19 recovery.
Previously, travelers moving between islands without a pre-test or proof of vaccine had to self-quarantine for 10 to 14 days.
To further complicate matters, only vaccinations administered in Hawaii were accepted, and pre-tests had to be completed within 72 hours of arrival from approved providers only, resulting in significant expense (pre-tests ranged from 140 $ to $ 200 in most cases) and even confusion that resulted in travelers being denied entry (people were pre-tested from an unapproved supplier).
In the future, island hopping in Hawaii will be more convenient and less expensive, although the strict restrictions on entering Hawaii will remain in place.
Transpacific travelers who are vaccinated outside of Hawaii will still need to submit pre-test results at their initial point of entry in order to avoid quarantine. After that, they will be free to move around the islands without further testing.
Earlier this month, Hawaii said it would continue to require pre-testing of travelers until the state’s vaccination rate hits 60%. At this point, it will allow travelers who have received their vaccine on the mainland to enter without pre-testing.
When the state’s vaccination rate reaches 70%, all restrictions on the Hawaii Safe Travels program will end – although a recent report indicated that number may be flexible.
At the time of this writing, the vaccination rate in Hawaii is around 56%.