Last-minute changes to traveler testing plan stir up questions ... and confusion

Last minute changes to the pre-travel testing plan brings up new questions, confusion among potential travelers

HONOLULU, Hawaii (HawaiiNewsNow) - Last-minute changes to the pre-travel testing program, which now includes “inter-county” travel, are triggering questions and confusion.

Many of the state’s testing and travel partners have still not released full details about their testing process. For instance, CVS and Walgreens' websites will currently not let you schedule a test if you’re asymptomatic.

For some neighbor island residents, it’s unclear when and where they’re supposed to take the test.

“For me it would be costs, what type of tests you can actually get and the location on where you’re able to get the test,” said Jacob Silva, of Maui.

Added PF Bentley, of Molokai: “Do we get the COVID test here before traveling to Oahu in order to come home here without the quarantine or do we travel here to Oahu, get the test on Oahu and then travel here without the quarantine?”

Maui and Kauai County are allowing inter-county travelers to avoid the 14-day quarantine through the program while Hawaii County opted out, requiring mandatory quarantine for all incoming Hawaii residents.

“I don’t understand why Harry Kim is OK with people coming in from COVID rich areas to his island with a test but other people from the state can’t come over even with a test,” said Bentley.

Silva feels pre-testing will only present more challenges for inter-county travelers especially if they can’t get fast results.

“If they’re traveling to a different island and they have to quarantine three to four days before they get their results," said Silva. “Sometimes people are just visiting friends or family or working on other islands just for the weekends so it’s definitely going to pose a challenge for everyone traveling.”

Residents on smaller islands like Lanai and Molokai say there are also concerns of the lack of resources for testing on their islands.

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