Hawaii requires a negative Covid test presented on arrival, or else you have to go into quarantine. But not any test will do, for instance if you got your test at the world-renowned Mayo Clinic that won’t be accepted because Hawaii only accepts tests on its list of trusted testing partners.
Except that isn’t really true, because you can present a test from CareNow or LetsGetChecked, since those are American Airlines partners and American Airline is a partner – even though it doesn’t say this anywhere in Hawaii’s online guidelines.
So you might forgive two young women who flew from Raleigh to Hawaii with their negative test results in hand – only to discover that the results wouldn’t be accepted because they weren’t from a provider on Hawaii’s list. Sarah Blackwood and Abbey Campbell were taking a graduation trip after finishing East Carolina State University degrees. However,
- Hawaii doesn’t allow testing on arrival
- And they don’t allow going into quarantine pending the results of a test
As if the trusted providers list wasn’t absurd enough, not allowing passengers to test on arrival for some premium is stupid as well. These two women either had to quarantine for a week and a half – or return to the mainland, get tested, and come back. They bought new tickets to Los Angeles, flew 5 hours, got tests, and came back to Hawaii. Both women are already vaccinated, by the way.
Their ordeal has already racked up well over a million views on TikTok telling the story of what happened when they flew Raleigh – Atlanta – Honolulu:
Imagine the let down finally arriving in Hawaii and learning that Hawaii won’t let you in. You’re vaccinated. You’ve tested negative for Covid-19. But you have the wrong papers. Campbell explains “So basically, you have to have it from certain companies. We didn’t know that. We just had our negative COVID tests.”
And the shock was compounded when they were told to go fly 5 hours to California to get new tests.
They paid $950 to get to LA. And they encountered others along the way who were in the same boat that they were.
“I think we met a total of like six couples that were there for the same reason,” Blackwood said, adding that a newlywed couple and a family from North Carolina were among them.
Blackwood and Campbell spent about six hours at the Los Angeles International Airport before they managed to get their results back and catch a standby flight back to Honolulu. The women said that other travelers and airport staff began recognizing them from their TikTok videos.
It took 40 hours to get from Raleigh to Honolulu to Los Angeles to Honolulu and on to their accommodations. They’d had six hours of sleep. And the advice they pass on is just to learn the rules – which in my view are something out of Terry Gilliam’s Brazil (1985).