Maui airport packed as travel restrictions ease for the state

HONOLULU (HawaiiNewsNow) – Many Hawaii residents are rejoicing over the state’s new travel rules.

“Waited for a day like this,” said Maui resident Celia Shibata who is traveling to Kona to see her granddaughter.

Beginning on Tuesday, passengers traveling inter-island no longer need a negative COVID test or proof of being vaccinated. Quarantine rules are also dropped entirely.

Oahu resident Frances Wright traveled to Maui on Tuesday. She said it is just like traveling prior to the pandemic.

“Didn’t have to upload vaccine cards or tests or anything. It was really nice,” Wright said. “The plane was full. Every seat was taken.”

Maui Airports District Manager said the Kahului Airport is currently seeing about 8,000 incoming travelers a day.

“Arrivals have been up,” said Marvin Moniz. “More so with today, the announcement today, lifting the inter-island restrictions and some of the restrictions lifted for the Trans-Pacific flights … so everybody is excited.”

Also starting on Tuesday, those vaccinated in Hawaii and traveling to the mainland do not need a negative COVID test and can skip quarantine when they return.

“We got our vaccines, so we didn’t have to do a COVID test and that worked really well,” said Lahaina resident Dennis O’Leary.

O’Leary and his wife Janet returned to Maui on Tuesday after visiting their children in Oregon and California.

“We haven’t seen our kids for like a year and a half,” O’Leary said. “As people get vaccinated, it’s the only real path forward. It’s good to see … it’s nice to see life again.”

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