Governor Ige: Inter-county pre-travel testing program to launch Oct. 15

Local News

HONOLULU (KHON2) — Tourism is set to re-open on Thursday, Oct. 15 with the start of the state’s pre-travel testing program, but what about inter-island travelers? Governor Ige announced travelers flying between O’ahu, Maui and Kaua’i County will also have the option to test out of quarantine.

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In a news conference on Tuesday, Governor Ige announced that the same pre-travel testing program which allows trans-pacific travelers to bypass quarantine requirements would also apply to individuals traveling from Honolulu to Maui and Kauai County.

The governor acknowledged growing concerns from local residents about travel between the islands. Many expressed frustrations about the lack of options available, especially, after the state announced a program that extended quarantine-free arrival to trans-pacific travelers.

“All of these measures are really focused on reviving our economy and restarting travel to the islands,” Ige said.

Governor Ige added that Hawaii Island would not be participating in a test-out system and instead require arriving passengers to take a second free test, paid for by the county, and quarantine until their results arrive. Hawaii County will only accept an antigen test, according to Mayor Harry Kim.

“We will also be conducting surveillance testing post-arrival,” Ige said.

The governor said the state will begin to test the success of the pre-travel program immediately by keeping strategic surveillance of 10% of all arriving passengers for the first four days of their stay in Hawai’i.

Thirty million dollars in CARES Act funding will go towards purchasing additional COVID-19 testing equipment, which the state hopes will contribute to more effective contact tracing once the pre-travel testing program kicks off.

To read the full proclamation, click here.

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