Hawaii to Waive Testing Requirements for Fully Vaccinated U.S. Travelers Starting Next Month
Hawaii will allow fully vaccinated domestic travelers to skip pre-arrival testing and quarantine requirements, the state's governor said Thursday.
Starting July 8, all travelers vaccinated in the United States will be allowed to upload their vaccination card to Hawaii's Safe Travels Program in lieu of the previously required COVID-19 PCR test, Gov. David Ige's office announced.
By that date, Ige said he expects Hawaii will have reached a 60% statewide vaccination rate. Currently, 62% of all residents have received at least one dose of a vaccine and 57% are fully vaccinated, according to Hawaii's Department of Health.
"Our residents have sacrificed and worked hard to get to this point, but we still have more to do," Ige said in a statement. "Please get vaccinated to protect yourselves and your loved ones. We are close to achieving a 70% vaccination rate, at which point all restrictions will end and we can return to the lives we remember."
Unvaccinated visitors will still be required to get tested before traveling at a "trusted partner" site in order to skip quarantine.
The new protocols come weeks after Hawaii lifted all restrictions on inter-county travel and started allowing fully vaccinated residents who received their COVID-19 shots in Hawaii to travel back to the state without the need to get a pre-travel test or quarantine. In May, the state also lifted its outdoor mask mandate, in line with the recommendation from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.
Ige said the state will lift all travel restrictions when it hits a 70% overall vaccination rate.
Beyond travel protocols, Ige said he will allow restaurants to increase capacity to 75% on July 8.
Hawaii's vaccination rate is higher than the country overall where 53.7% of people have received at least a first dose and 45.6% are fully vaccinated, according to the CDC.
Alison Fox is a contributing writer for Travel + Leisure. When she's not in New York City, she likes to spend her time at the beach or exploring new destinations and hopes to visit every country in the world. Follow her adventures on Instagram.