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.hawaii travel requirements.

My husband gifted me a trip to Hawai'i for my birthday, but even though we had our flights and accommodations ready to visit the Aloha State, the Aloha State was not ready to let us visit.

Wait, what? Was that a run-on sentence?

I was already looking for a cute, FUPA-hiding bathing suit when I remembered some guy got in trouble for not following the mandatory quarantine requirement while he was in Hawai'i. He was like, forget staying in my hotel, I'm going to have fun and tell the world all about it! ...and tell the world all about it he did, which is why local authorities were able to catch up to him and arrest him before fleeing the state. 

The search for a new bathing suit came to a complete stop because I didn't want to get arrested! I'm pretty sure getting arrested in Hawaiian is worse than getting yelled at in German! IYKYK. Luckily, our airline had a detailed page outlining the following requirements for traveling to Hawaii.

Okay, so do you quarantine or provide a Negative COVID-19 Test?

Either! Those that are 5 years or older and want to avoid having to quarantine for 10 days in Hawaii, must provide a negative COVID-19 PCR test. The test has to come from a provider on Hawai'i's list of approved trusted testing partners. You can find the list for approved partners here

When do you take the COVID-19 test?

The test has to be done within 72 hours of your final flight to Hawaii. For example, our flight plans started in Ontario with a layover in Oakland, CA. Since our flight from Oakland went straight to Honolulu, we had to take our test within 72 hours of the flight from Oakland. 

Timing the test can be tricky because if you take your test too early, it may not be within the 72-hour requirement. If you take it a day before your flight, you can risk not getting the results before your flight. Our flight from Oakland was scheduled at 5:10PM on a Monday and we took our test around 5:15PM the Friday before. I was so nervous thinking we wouldn't get the results on time, but luckily we got them the day before our flight. 

How much is the test?

Some of the approved providers may accept your insurance, but there is also a chance your insurance may not cover COVID testing for personal travel. If that is the case, you will have to pay out of pocket, like we did. We ended up having to pay $139 per person for our test through CVS Health. I suggest you check the list of approved providers to find the best option for you.

What do you do with your test results?

Once you have your negative COVID test results from an approved provider, you will have to create a Safe Travels Account. This is where you will be able to register your trip dates, fill out the health questionnaire and upload your negative test results. If you choose to quarantine, this is were you will have to document your daily check-ins. Adults are also able to add children under their Safe Travels Account. 

Once your negative test is confirmed through your Safe Travels Account (it took less than a minute after we uploaded our results), the page will generate a QR code which you will need prior to boarding your flight. Southwest Airlines had a designated area by our gate where they scanned our QR code and provided us with a wristband showing that we had been pre-screened. This was done to speed-up the process so that we didn't have to screen upon arriving at the airport in Hawaii.

Side note for those traveling with toddlers/infants

We were traveling with our 2-year old who was registered under my husband's Safe travels account, but neither my daughter or my husband were able to get a wristband prior to our flight. HOWEVER, they were able to board the plane, but were told that they would have to get screened once they arrived in Honolulu. I'm still unsure why this happened.

Upon arrival, before collecting our luggage, those with wristbands were able to walk past the screening area. Those without wristbands, like my husband and my 2-year old, had to go through the screening process, which was very similar to the one at the Oakland airport.

Was it worth having to meet all the requirements?

100% yes! There were a lot of extra steps involved, especially when compared to pre-covid travel, but it was so worth it! In fact, we took longer waiting for our luggage at the baggage claim area than going through the screening process at the airport. I have to give credit to Southwest Airlines for making it super easy to follow the requirements and also the State of Hawai'i for doing all of this to keep visitors and their residents safe. 

I hope reading this encourages you to visit the beautiful state of Hawai'i soon and if you have any additional questions, let me know! I'll leave you with a cute video created by the state of Hawaii doing a better job explaining everything I just wrote in this super long post!

Much Aloha, 


  1. This is so interesting!! I was actually just saying today how much I want to revisit Hawaii, so its good to know all the info about it! Hopefully I can go soon <3

  2. It looks the perfect place to escape and recharge :) http://www.bauchlefashion.com/2021/09/the-corduroy-2021-shopping-guide-where.html