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Longing for a luau? Hawaii now requires travelers to fill out a digital health application before arriving

A luau in Hawaii.
A luau in Hawaii. (Les Bohlen)

If you’ve planned on or are envisioning a beautiful trip to Hawaii, you should first know about the state’s new mandatory health application, as the coronavirus pandemic continues.

The application travelers are required to fill out collects information that is “critical to protecting the health of (Hawaii’s) residents and visitors alike.”

The Safe Travels app is part of a multi-layered process that also gathers temperature checks upon arrival, as well as secondary screenings for travelers with symptoms or temperatures of 100.4 degrees or higher.

The state of Hawaii recently launched the digital app so that travelers could provide their required health information before they arrive at the airport, speeding up the process.

“It will also help us keep in contact with those who are required to be in quarantine. This is an important step in preparing to reopen our economy,” Hawaii Gov. David Age said in a news release.

Travelers previously were required to fill out the same forms, but on paper, when they arrived in Hawaii.

Now, the state has two different types of digital forms: One each for inter-island travel and trans-pacific travel. And travelers are encouraged to provide details well in advance of their trip.

“Compared to paper processing, this online app will save travelers time at the airport and will speed up distribution of information to state and county officials who need it to keep us all safe,” said Douglas Murdock, the chief information officer at Office of Enterprise Technology Services for Hawaii.

Upon providing health information at least one day before departure, travelers will receive a QR code that an airport screener will scan when they arrive.

A mandatory 14-day quarantine is still in effect for travelers to Hawaii, though, according to Travel and Leisure, a pre-test program was supposed to be instated in Hawaii that would have eliminated the need for out-of-state travelers to quarantine in August. It was delayed until Oct. 1 due to an increase in COVID-19 cases in both Hawaii and California -- one of the state’s biggest tourism markets.

For the time being, travelers must check into the Safe Travels Hawaii website each day for health check-ins for the duration of their quarantine.


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