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As the number of confirmed coronavirus cases in Hawaii continues to rise, Governor David Ige is calling on all residents and visitors to delay all non-essential travel through the end of October 2021.
According to Reuters.com, Governor Ige revealed expanded restrictions on restaurant capacities and limited access to rental cars, informing potential travelers that visiting the tropical paradise now would not provide the typical Hawaii vacation experience.
"Our hospitals are reaching capacity and our ICUs are filling up," Governor Ige said at a media briefing on Monday. "Now is not a good time to travel to Hawaii."
"It will take six to seven weeks to see significant change in the number of COVID cases," Ige continued. "It is a risky time to be traveling right now. Everyone, residents and visitors alike, should reduce travel to essential business activities only."
Governor Ige also voiced his support for Honolulu Mayor Rick Blangiardi, who recently announced that indoor gatherings in the city would be limited to just 10 people, while outdoor events would be limited to 25.
Hawaii Tourism Authority CEO John De Fries said that overall visitor arrival numbers typically decline in the fall, but those who plan to visit the islands in the coming weeks should consider postponing.
"Our community, residents and the visitor industry are responsible for working together to address this crisis," De Fries said. "As such, we are strongly advising visitors that now is not the right time to travel, and they should postpone their trips through the end of October."
The surge in COVID-19 infections has caused state officials to contemplate a return to tougher restrictions on travelers, including mandatory testing for vaccinated domestic travelers, according to Lieutenant Governor Josh Green.
Lieutenant Governor Green said the state is considering all possible options to mitigate the outbreak, including requiring proof of vaccination at gyms, restaurants and other public places, as well as implementing curfews to reduce activities that could further strain local hospitals.
Donald Wood is TravelPulse’s senior writer in the breaking news department, bringing nearly 15 years of experience to the desk....
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