Alaska Airlines guests traveling to Hawaii can now pre-clear on the West Coast, avoiding lines and bypassing the airport screening process after they arrive in Hawaii with an approved negative COVID-19 test. Alaska’s Pre-Clear program, launched this week in coordination with the State of Hawaii, is the first of its kind to allow guests to obtain an exemption from the state’s mandatory 14-day quarantine before departure.
In mid-October, Hawaii began a pre-travel testing program that allows anyone entering the state who tests negative for COVID-19 in advance to proceed without the current two-week mandatory quarantine. To help with the long wait times that travelers arriving in the Islands have experienced as part of this program, Alaska has received approval to pre-clear guests who complete the state’s requirements prior to check-in, so that no additional screening is needed after arrival at Hawaii’s airports.
“As guests start planning their 2021 travel to Hawaii, we’re focused on making the journey as safe, easy and hassle-free as possible,” said Ben Minicucci, Alaska Airlines’ president, who flew to Honolulu on the first day of the pre-travel testing program to experience the arrival process first-hand. “We appreciate Hawaii’s partnership to help ensure our guests are well-informed and visit these beautiful islands responsibly, wearing a mask and following the state’s safety guidelines.”
Alaska began piloting the Hawaii Pre-Clear program over the past week with its flights from the West Coast to Maui. Starting the week of Dec. 14, the program will be rolled out on all flights to Oahu and Kona on Hawaii Island. Due to the temporary pause in Kauai’s participation in the state’s pre-travel testing program, Alaska’s flights to Kauai have been suspended and will not be included in the Hawaii Pre-Clear program at this time.
“On behalf of the State of Hawaii, we appreciate Alaska’s commitment in helping to keep our community safe,” said Hawaii Governor David Ige. “Alaska has been a true partner from the very start of the pre-travel testing program by communicating with their guests about the state’s requirements so that they are well-prepared for their visit. Alaska’s Pre-Clear program adds another layer of safety by helping to ensure that the majority, if not all, of Alaska’s guests arrive in Hawaii with proof of their negative COVID-19 test results.”