Apparently all our county mayors of Hawaii have agreed on a new, unified, Safe Travels modification, and are awaiting word from Gov. David Ige.
The joint proposal would require incoming trans-Pacific travelers to take a pre-travel test as well as a post-arrival test three to four days after arrival, Mayor Derek Kawakami said Friday. Kawakami said the temporary opt-out of the Safe Travels program was to get ahead of a spike in cases in the county.
Since Wednesday, the county has been enforcing a 14-day, mandatory quarantine of all travelers, regardless of pre-travel or post-travel tests, residency or where they are traveling from. “Our hope is to avoid a lockdown on our island and continue in Tier 4, which is the least-restrictive tier,” Kawakami said.
“The suspension on the Safe Travels program is intended to be temporary, and we fully expect there will be modifications.”“The joint proposal by the mayors is specific to trans-Pacific travelers, so the assumption is that inter-island travel would remain on the current Safe Travels program,” a county spokesperson said Friday.
New Recommendations on Quarantine from CDC ~ quarantine for a week?
Earlier this week, CDC released new recommendations on quarantines, suggesting travelers get tested up to three days before a flight, then tested between three and five days after travel while staying home for a week. With a negative test, quarantine can be shorted to a week. Without a test, the CDC recommends a 10-day quarantine.
Friday, the Hawaii state Department of Health followed, shortening its quarantine guidelines for those who have been potentially exposed to the coronavirus, like close contacts. The DOH officially recommends 10 days “to improve compliance without significantly increasing the risk of transmission in the community,” a press release stated.
“We are following the CDC’s guidance for a shorter quarantine to address the mental- and emotional-health issues caused by isolation, and to improve compliance,” said Dr. Elizabeth Char, DOH director, in a press release. “This updated guidance balances the ongoing need to control the spread of the virus in our state while also continuing to safely reopen our state and reducing the personal burden of quarantines on Hawai‘i residents.”
Kawakami said he and his team will continue to monitor the situation, but there is no word yet on shortening the two-week quarantine on Kaua‘i.“There is no testing exemption, but we are aware that Governor Ige is considering new CDC quarantine guidance, and could reduce the length of the travel quarantine down to the recommended 10 days,” Kawakami said.
Quarantine rules as of Dec. 4
According to Kauai’s Rule 23, travelers must quarantine, negative pre-test or not when arriving on Kaua‘i.
Residents, as well as visitors, may spend their two-weeks at private residences.
However, in accordance with a past order, visitors may not stay in transient vacation or short-term rentals, like those found on Airbnb or VRBO. Visitors are also not allowed to rent cars until after the 14-day quarantine. More at The Garden Island Newspaper.
My own thoughts on this are that after Xmas, that tourism may very well return to a more normal state in Hawaii, Kauai included.In the meantime, check back as I will post an update on when Kauai reopens again following this Kauai Travel Update December 2020.