Wondering what it’s like to travel to Hawaii? Today I’m sharing the Hawaii COVID Testing Requirements + my experience coming back home after a trip to the mainland!
I will be the first to admit that traveling back to Hawaii after visiting my parents gave me severe anxiety. It was the first time I had boarded a plane in over a year, and I was very afraid of messing up the Hawaii Safe Travels protocol. One single missed step and I would have needed to quarantine for 10 days and to be totally transparent – I am a rule follower to my core. I didn’t want to get in trouble.
That said, after researching and reading and looking up every possible scenario (and then triple checking it all), my experience with Hawaii COVID testing requirements was relatively seamless.
Here’s the step-by-step process for Hawaii testing requirements to enter the state:
Hawaii COVID Testing Requirements
Step 1: Book your flight.
Step 2: Register at Travel.Hawaii.Gov. All adults 18 + over, must register for the SAFE TRAVELS online program.
Step 3: No earlier than 72-hours before the HAWAII LEG of your flight departure time, you must take a test. The test must be an FDA-authorized Nucleic Acid Amplification (NAAT) test from a certified lab. No Antigen or Antibody tests are accepted and ALL travelers including minors (5 and up) must be tested.
Step 4: When you get your test results (negative only!), upload them to your SAFE TRAVELS account and fill out the Travel Health Questionnaire. You cannot do this earlier than 24 hours prior to travel. Once that is completed, you will be sent a QR code. If you do not do the travel questionnaire, you will not be sent your QR code, so make sure you upload AND do the questionnaire. You can also upload a copy of your vaccine card if you live in Hawaii and plan to travel to/from the mainland in the future.
Hawaii COVID Test For Travel
Step 5: Print negative test results and QR code to carry with you on the plane.
Hawaii Travel Testing Requirements
Now, this next part may differ depending on what airline you fly (I flew United), but when you check in for your flight, you will be asked to show your QR code. I had layovers in both Chicago and Los Angeles, so I wasn’t even on my “Hawaii leg” at check-in, but I was still asked for my QR code.
When I arrived to Los Angeles (for my “Hawaii leg” direct to Honolulu), I was told at the gate I needed to go to United’s customer service counter to show my SAFE TRAVELS QR code. The line was really long, but they moved quickly.
At United’s customer service, my QR code was scanned and I was given a wristband. Back at the gate, my ticket was scanned and I was asked to show my wristband, as well as my QR code (It was a process).
Upon landing in Honolulu, anyone with a wristband was able to walk directly to baggage.
I will admit that I was extremely nervous about getting back into travel again, especially since any sort of travel to/from Hawaii is long-haul. On this much-anticipated trip to see my family, I flew on both American and United and felt safe, was surprised by how compliant everyone seemed to the rules, and the planes felt clean. To see my family, it was worth every minute of prepping!