Hawaii COVID-19 'Resort Bubble' Program
What we know about Hawaii's EMQ program for quarantined visitors
Last Updated: March 17, 2021, at 5:30 pm HST
Kauai has an Enhanced Movement Quarantine 'Resort Bubbles' program
Visiting Hawaii in 2021 is obviously a lot different than the years prior. With 10-day quarantine travel restrictions in place for all arriving travelers since late March 2020, attempting to visiting Hawaii has been filled with challenges during the COVID-19 pandemic. But there is some positive news for visitors planning to arrive while an island's quarantine period remains in effect. Kauai's Mayor announced in September 2020 an "Enhanced Movement Quarantine," or "Resort Bubble," program approved by Hawaii Gov. David Ige.
Kauai was the first county to receive Governor Ige’s approval on a resort bubble idea and is the only island currently participating with the resort bubble plan at this time; primarily due to Kauai's Mayor opting out of the pre-travel program beginning this past December 2, 2020. In our opinion, the additional Hawaii counties likely won't follow suit, and will all continue participating in the state's official pre-travel testing program from trusted partners that began in October 2020. Details on the program and a list of participating hotels are included below.
Resort Bubble Program to end April 5, 2021
The latest news from Kauai is that the 'Garden Island' will rejoin the statewide Safe Travels program, beginning April 5, 2021. The governor has now approved the request. The resort bubble program will also end on April 5th according to the latest news.
Hawaii's re-opening has honestly been an evolving process with numerous changes and ongoing updates. We recognize that this, unfortunately, causes confusion to potential travelers, and we are continuing to monitor this situation closely. We will provide additional pertinent vaccination updates here regularly, from official sources, on this page as additional information becomes available to us. We also encourage our readers to sign up for our 'Hawaii Travel Update' emails to receive pertinent information on all of the recent developments regarding travel to Hawaii, including Hawaii 'Resort Bubble' updates.
Additionally, we've created a new page dedicated to the day-by-day updates that are occurring with Hawaii's reopening process: Hawaii COVID-19 Travel News & Headlines →
Kauai Resort Bubbles available
New 'Resort Bubble' policies for Kauai through April 5, 2021
In late December 2020, Governor Ige approved Kauai Mayor Kawakami's request to implement a pre-and-post-travel testing program for visitors who stay in "resort bubble" hotels. The program currently allows travelers who participate in the program to enjoy the resort amenities for the first three days of their vacation until they are eligible to take their post-travel test. Once the post-travel test shows they are COVID-free, they will be released from quarantine and can leave the "resort bubble." You can view Emergency Rule 24 here.
To qualify, travelers must:
- Take a pre-travel test within 72 hours before traveling to Kauai and receive a negative test result.
- Stay at an approved Enhanced Movement Quarantine (EMQ) "resort bubble" property.
- Take a post-travel test more than 72 hours after arriving on Kauai and receive a negative result.
The 'resort bubble' test can be any COVID-19 diagnostic test (an antigen or PCR test) with emergency use authorization from the U.S. Food and Drug Administration. The lab does not need to be on the state's Trusted Testing and Travel Partners list for use in Kauai's resort bubble program.
Potential 'Resort Bubbles' Program Quarantine Changes
We will continue to monitor this program for developments and post them on this page, including via the program information below, accordingly.
What Properties are "Resort Bubbles" on Kauai?
Which Hotels are participating in the program through April 5, 2021?
- The Cliffs at Princeville
- Hilton Garden Inn Kauai Wailua Bay
- Koa Kea Hotel & Resort at Poipu
- The Lodge at Kukuiula
- Timbers Kauai Ocean Club & Residences at Hokuala
- Kauai Marriott Resort & Beach Club
- The Point at Poipu
- Hanalei Bay Resort
- Hanalei Colony Resort
- Lawai Beach Resort
Hawaii 'Resort Bubble' Program Information
Voluntary Program - Not All Hotel Properties are Participating
Kauai Mayor Kawakami recently said, "We understand the need to address the economic hardship facing our tourism-based community, while also preserving the safety of our residents," said in a statement. "The Resort Bubble program is an added tool to reopening our economy while we learn to co-exist with this virus. It’s not a replacement or the final solution, and we will continue to keep our community updated as we make progress," the Mayor continued.
Violation of Resort Bubble Quarantine
Visitors should also remember that violation of the quarantine is a misdemeanor and punishable by a maximum fine of $5,000, or imprisonment of not more than one year, or both. Enforcement will be handled by each of Hawaii’s four counties.
Rule-breakers who break quarantine or tamper with the 'resort bubble' bracelet will immediately be flagged by hotel security and police will respond.
- Details and thorough information on Hawaii's pre-travel testing for both trans-Pacific and inter-island travel can be found on our Hawaii COVID Testing Requirements & Test Procedures →
- More information on the current COVID-19 rules & restrictions, including for each Hawaiian county/island, can be found on our updated page for Hawaii Travel Restrictions & Rules →
- A complete list of the trusted travel partners, currently approved by the state of Hawaii, for pre-travel testing can be found here: Hawaii Trusted Travel Partners & Test Costs →
- Now that Hawaii has reopened to travelers with restrictions, we've created an article to cover everything you need to know about What is Open, Closed, or Reopening Soon →
- For news, updates, and headlines related to COVID-19 and travel within and to Hawaii, we've created a new page dedicated to the day-by-day updates: Hawaii COVID-19 Travel News & Headlines →
More information on this new program is forthcoming as details are finalized. We will continue to post updates on this page.
Hawaii COVID-19 Information & Resources
Information Disclaimer: Details and information on this page, including dates, may change on a day-by-day basis. While we will be making every effort to keep these pages relevant and up to date, the decision to travel is ultimately your own responsibility. Please travel safely and keep an eye on our Special Alerts page for more information regarding COVID-19 and re-opening in Hawaii.