Vaccinated Travelers Could Soon Head to Hawaii with a Digital Vaccine Passport

You won't have to quarantine.

TOR JOHNSON/HAWAII TOURISM AUTHORITY (HTA)

If you've spent the last 12-ish months of quarantine dreaming about the day you can safely hop a flight, post up on the beach, and down Mai Tais like its your job, then congrats. Soon that fantasy could be an actual reality—if you're vaccinated, of course. 

Hawaii is reportedly working on a vaccine passport that would allow those visitors into the state without the current quarantine protocol. And according to Hawaii News Now, the program could kick off as soon as March 1 for in-state essential workers who have received the full dose.

"The state is working closely with the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention and is asking the CDC for explicit guidelines on vaccination and travel," Hawaii Gov. David Ige said in a press release last week. "This EP acknowledges vaccinated travelers/quarantine as a future exception, but the state will wait for specific guidance from the CDC before implementing a quarantine exception for vaccinated travelers."

According to Lt. Governor Green, however, who spoke with Hawaii News Now earlier this week, the new procedure could be rolling out very soon. 

"General Hara will be able to flip the switch and open that up and make that our policy as soon as we have some of the infrastructure in place," Green told the outlet. "We’re hopeful that April 1 for all of our state individuals any citizen that has been vaccinated plus two weeks to fly inter-island." 

Green also noted that new policy would likely extend to mainland travel by May, with the hope of tripling visitors to Hawaii by fall. So far, the state has already administered over 260,000 vaccines and by that vaccine passport program start, Hawaii could be at 400,000. 

"This is the way we restore our economy very quickly," Green added. "We would likely see a huge uptick in visitors by say the fall this way." 

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Megan Schaltegger is a staff writer at Thrillist.