HONOLULU, Hawaii (HawaiiNewsNow) - Hawaii is among the international destinations Japan is considering allowing travel to and from in light of the COVID-19 pandemic.
The Governor’s Office confirmed Hawaii was one of the 13 destinations that Japan has considered safe for its residents to resume travel to, but details are still being finalized.
Other countries on the list include Brunei, Cambodia, China, Hong Kong, Macao, Laos, Malaysia, Mongolia, Myanmar, the Republic of Korea, Singapore and Taiwan.
Hawaii’s case count is still relatively low compared to the rest of the United States, which reported a 7-day average of about 66,000 new cases.
It’s why Hawaii specifically, and not the Continental U.S. is on Japan’s “Safe Travel List.”
Travelers form Japan would have to pass safety and health requirements, like testing negative for coronavirus if they wanted to come to the islands.
“We know that Hawaii residents are concerned about health and safety, but that travel needs to be begin incrementally and what better way to begin travel by working with the Japan visitors because they’ll be a safe group of people,” said House Speaker State Rep. Scott Saiki.
Gov. Ige said in a statement, “Japan and Hawaii enjoy longstanding cultural ties and a deep-rooted friendship that has enriched the lives of many generations. It’s important that we restore travel between Japan and Hawaii and we see this program as a way to make this possible, while also preventing the further spread of infections from COVID-19.”
Meanwhile, Hawaii has yet to open up its shores to travelers without a 14-day quarantine mandate. The so-called restart of tourism was pushed back until at least early September.