Hawaii vacation news: October 28, 2020

– Yesterday, Gov. Ige announced that starting November 6th, Hawaii will welcome travelers from Japan with a 72-hour pre-test from a trusted testing partner. This Hawaii News Now segment provides a summary of that announcement.

– In yesterday’s press conference, the governor shared the following helpful image to explain all the testing requirements based on where travel originates to and within Hawaii.

– One of the bigger confusions/complaints/controversies we’re seeing since the October 15th re-opening is about masks. Some lawmakers are calling for a clear, statewide mask mandate. Rules can vary by county, but basically people are expected to wear masks anytime they’re outside of their home/lodging — even on the beach when not swimming.

– Due to a recent surge of COVID-19 cases on the island of Lana’i, the island is now on stay-at-home orders. The island went from no cases since the beginning of the pandemic to over 80 cases in just a week. All travelers to the island must quarantine for 14 days.

– If you’re planning to go to some popular state parks in Hawaii, you’ll have to pay more. New fees for out-of-state visitors went into effect earlier this month. The new fees reflect a 100% increase — mostly from $5 to $10 per car. Hawaii residents are allowed free entry. The fees for walk-up entry changed from $1 to $5 per individual. The parks where new fees are in effect are:

– Winter has come early for Hawaii Island on Monday with the season’s first snowfall on the tall summit of Mauna Kea per Hawaii News Now. If you’re planning a winter trip to Hawaii, don’t worry. You’re not going to need your winter coat, unless you plan to go to the higher elevations like Mauna Kea, Mauna Loa or Haleakala. (See these frequently asked questions about a winter vacation in Hawaii.)

– Another signal that winter is coming is the arrival of the humpback whales. The first sighting was on October 8th off the coast of Maui per the Maui News. Congratulations to Jack Fitzpatrick who is the winner of our 11th annual contest to guess the first humpback whale sighting. Jack correctly guessed that the first sighting would be on October 8th. Apparently he had some insider information because he said that Nemo told him.

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