(BIVN) – With no newly reported cases of COVID-19 in the State of Hawaiʻi in three days, state officials say an end to the inter-island travel quarantine will soon be announced.
During an afternoon news briefing, Governor David Ige said this past Memorial Day weekend was “a great weekend in the fight against COVID-19,” and thanked everyone for their efforts. The State of Hawai‘i says it leads the nation in controlling the coronavirus outbreak.
Much of the news conference was devoted to the process of reopening Hawaiʻi. “It must be done in a careful manner so we can continue to protect your health and the health of your families and neighbors,” the governor said.
The State of Hawaiʻi provided this update on Tuesday afternoon:
The re-opening of Hawaiʻi is moving forward. Stores are re-opening. People can go to the beach and some parks. Some services and other businesses have re-started. Gov. Ige said he expects to announce the end of the inter-island travel quarantine very soon. He added, “And we are finalizing the plans to re-open tourism. Gov. Ige reminded everyone that we need to keep up our health best practices by maintaining social distancing, washing our hands, wearing our masks, staying home if sick and avoiding large gatherings. The governor concluded, “We came together as a community to fight the virus. And we still need to work together to remain safe.”
Hawaiʻi officials first talked about ending the inter-island quarantine last week, noting that if the travel restriction were lifted and a new COVID-19 surge occurs, the quarantine might need to be reinstated.
“It is important to remember that we will keep the virus under control through personal responsibility … it’s about your own actions,” Governor Ige said on Tuesday.
Reopening Hawaiʻi as a tourism destination to the world is farther off. Hotels revenues are down dramatically, the Hawaiʻi Tourism Authority reports. Hotels across the state “reported dramatic declines in revenue per available room (RevPAR), average daily rate (ADR), and occupancy last month compared to April 2019 due to the COVID-19 pandemic,” the HTA said. “According to the Hawai‘i Tourism Authority, statewide RevPAR in April 2020 decreased to $12 (-94.5%), ADR fell to $131 (-51.8%), and occupancy declined to 8.9 percent (-69.0 percentage points).”
On Monday, a total of 1,028 people arrived in Hawai‘i including 259 visitors and 381 returning residents, state officials say.