Ige Says Interisland Quarantine to End ‘Soon’May 26, 2020, 5:34 PM HST (Updated May 26, 2020, 5:34 PM)
Gov. David Ige implied Tuesday that the end to the state’s interisland travel quarantine will soon be rolled back and that reopening Hawai‘i to tourism won’t be far behind.
After three consecutive days with zero new cases of COVID-19 reported statewide, the governor said in a press conference that he expected to rescind the interisland travel quarantine “very soon.” However, he declined to provide a specific date.
“We are finalizing plans to reopen tourism,” added Ige, but again did not provide a timeline. “We are ready to respond (to any surges).”
Hospital and testing capacity across the state is strong enough to begin those not under mandatory quarantine to move from one island to the next, Ige said. Though, reversals of policy will remain an open possibility.
Unrestricted travel to Hawai‘i is another matter. More than 1,000 people arrived to the islands Monday, continuing a trend that’s persisted for more than a week of four-digit or near-four-digit arrivals. At this time last year, roughly 30,000 people were arriving to the state by airplane every single day.
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The primary sticking point for reopening Hawai‘i’s borders to national and international travel is consistent and rapid testing of visitor arrivals that would allow for an exemption to the mandatory 14-day quarantine, which is in place through the end of June.
The governor has not committed to any timetable to reverse that quarantine.