Hawaii Governor David Ige has given his approval for a vaccine exemption program for visitors to Hawaii.
The exemption would allow those who have been inoculated against Covid-19 to travel to Hawaii without undergoing testing or quarantine. The program could begin rollout as early as May, according to KHON.
The program still needs approval from HIEMA director General Kenneth Hara. However, Hawaii Lieutenant Governor Josh Green noted that he and Hara are “all for it” and are developing the program.
“General Hara and I are in lockstep to get this done,” said Green. “Really, it was a good day when the governor agreed to go this direction. This is the game-changer for Hawaii.”
Hawaii is working with companies that travelers are familiar with, including CommonPass and Clear as well as First Vitals in order to develop a digital platform that would streamline the process. However, travelers may just show their vaccine card and valid identification at the boarding gate.
Green noted that this was the “natural evolution of our Safe Travel Program.”
Travelers who are not vaccinated are still able to travel to the destination and avoid quarantine by getting tested for Covid-19.
“So we don’t discriminate against anyone, if they are against being vaccinated and they want to travel, they can just get a test, no big deal,” Green said. “So people will have choices. We always believe that people should be treated fairly.”
The vaccine exemption could begin as early as May 1, and a plan will be rolled out the week of April 12.