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Hawaii unveils new ‘resort bubble’ concept for people to travel between islands

Hawaii Gov. David Ige said the state won’t reopen to tourists. But a new concept has taken hold.

A sign at Pauoa Elementary School in Honolulu on Monday, August 17, 2020, informs students when to pick-up computers for distance learning. Many Hawaii public school students are spending the first day of school online as coronavirus cases surge, mostly on the island of Oahu, where Honolulu is located.
A sign at Pauoa Elementary School in Honolulu on Monday, August 17, 2020, informs students when to pick up computers for distance learning. Hawaii Gov. David Ige has unveiled a new plan called the “resort bubble” that will help people travel between Hawaiian islands
Jennifer Sinco, Associated Press

Hawaii Gov. David Ige has unveiled a new plan called the “resort bubble” that will help people travel between Hawaiian islands, according to West Hawaii Today.

What’s going on?

  • The new concept has been billed as a movement quarantine system that allows people on Hawaii to travel between islands without a 14-day quarantine.
  • The idea would allow tourists to visit each of the islands. The government would track their movements with a wearable monitor to make sure they stay within the boundaries of their hotel or facility, West Hawaii Today reports.
  • Tourists would be asked to stay within their “geofence.”
  • Travelers would have to limit their exposure to others within the bubble.
  • Travelers would also sign waivers that allow the state to monitor them and have access to health care records, according to USA Today.

What’s next:

  • The concept is still being figured out. Counties would work with hotels and resorts to iron out the details. Hawaii has yet to approve the concept as some of the finer points remain under discussion, USA Today reports.

“At a certain point, we need to learn to co-exist with this virus and the EMQ or ‘resort bubble’ is just one step in the staged approach for a broader opening of travel,” Kauai Mayor Derek Kawakami said in a statement.