Travelers from the Philippines, South Korea added to Hawaii’s Safe Travels program

(FILE) A Philippine Airlines flight arriving at Honolulu’s Daniel K. Inouye International Airport in February 2020. (Photo by Des Acenas)

HONOLULU (Eagle News) – Starting Thursday, July 15, travelers from the Philippines and from South Korea may bypass the State of Hawaii’s mandatory 10-day quarantine if they take a COVID-19 test from a trusted testing partner.

“We are delighted to announce that we are expanding our Safe Travels pre-travel testing program to include travelers from the Philippines and South Korea,” said Governor David Ige. “Hawaii is also home to many Filipino and Korean Americans, and we appreciate our partners who are helping families reconnect.”

Travelers from the Philippines

Travelers flying from the Philippines to Hawaii may bypass the state’s mandatory 10-day quarantine if they take a COVID-19 test from labs identified by Philippine Airlines. The state’s Department of Health (DOH) has approved the use of COVID-19 RT-PCR tests conducted by laboratories from the following:

1. Detoxicare Molecular Diagnostics Laboratory, Mandaluyong City

2. Safeguard DNA Diagnostic, Inc., Mandaluyong City

3. Cardinal Santos Medical Center, San Juan City, Metro Manila

4. Bacolod Queen of Mercy Hospital, Bacolod City

5. St. Elizabeth Hospital Inc., General Santos City

“This is a great convenience for our passengers traveling to Honolulu, who need not undergo the 10-day quarantine upon arrival if they secure negative RT-PCR tests from our PAL testing partners in the Philippines,” said Dexter C. Lee, senior vice president of Philippine Airlines. “As we celebrate the 75th anniversary of our Honolulu service July 31st, the first transpacific flight by any Asian airline, we are committed to be a faithful partner in boosting tourism and travel between the Philippines and Hawaii.”

More information is available at the website

Travelers from South Korea

Incheon Airport’s COVID-19 Testing Center now provides one-stop services for COVID-19 testing and issues health declaration cards for outbound passengers who test negative. Online reservations are required.

Open year-round, the Testing Center is located at the west side parking lot, B1, Passenger Terminal 2. Outbound passengers can receive their results on the same day if they take the test between 7:00 am to 11:30 am, and the following day if they take the test between 1:00 pm to 6:00 pm.

Travelers can find more information at

“Hawaii Tourism Korea has been working diligently with the State Department of Health and Attorney General’s office to expand the Trusted Travel Partner options in this important international market for Hawaii with the significant addition of Incheon Airport,” said John De Fries, president and chief executive officer of the Hawaii Tourism Authority. “This partnership provides convenient access for travelers coming from Korea, which is a positive step forward to bringing this traditionally higher-spending market back to the islands.”

In addition to the state’s program, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) is requiring proof of a negative COVID-19 test or documentation of having recovered from COVID-19 for all air passengers arriving from a foreign country to the United States.

In all cases, tests must be taken no earlier than 72 hours prior to departure and the negative test result submitted prior to departure for Hawaii. Travelers must upload their negative test result into the Safe Travels digital platform and have a hard copy with them before departing for Hawaii.

(Eagle News Service)