Hawaii’s governor says ‘now is not the time’ for tourists to visit the state due to COVID-19

In an interview with the Honolulu Star-Advertiser, Hawaii Governor David Ige discouraged travel saying, “Now’s not a good time to visit Hawaii.”

On Monday, Ige urged people around the world not to travel to Hawaii in order to reduce the spread of Covid-19. This plea included Hawaii residents. He claimed that a larger part of new cases come from Hawaiians leaving the islands and bringing the virus back with them. In the interview, he was asked if another statewide shutdown was a possibility. His response: “Another shutdown is really the last resort.”

Hawaii House Speaker Scott Saiki is a co-chairman of the House Select Committee on COVID-19, which is scheduled to talk about the consequences of Ige’s recent announcement in the next week. Saiki commented, “I don’t see how the governor’s request will improve COVID numbers in Hawaii. The governor should have asked unvaccinated people not to travel to Hawaii.”

On the other hand, State Sen Glenn Wakai said Ige’s announcement was a month overdue. Despite the request made by Ige, travel restrictions have not been mandated. The previous requirement of having a negative Covid-19 test before entering Hawaii was repealed last month for those who fully vaccinated.

That hasn’t changed either. However, Ige did say that hospitals are nearly at capacity due to the Delta variant. About 55% of Hawaiians have been fully vaccinated, a number above the national average.



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