How to Get Walgreens COVID Test For Traveling to Hawaii & How Alaska Airlines COVID Pre-Clear Program Works

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How to Get Walgreens COVID Test For Traveling to Hawaii & How Alaska Airlines COVID Pre-Clear Program Works

UPDATES
  • June 8, 2021 - Good News: Hawaii's governor announced that starting June 15th, all inter-county testing and quarantine for inter-island travel will be lifted. See Interisland Travel Testing/Quarantine Requirement section in this article. 
  • Southwest Airlines now offers a Pre-Clear program too along with Alaska Airlines & United. See the official announcement here
  • United Airlines now has a Pre-Clearance program too along with Alaska Airlines. See this news release

Hawaii's all major islands are currently opening for visitors without the mandatory 10 days quarantine if you have a negative COVID test within 72 hours of your last flight’s departure into Hawaii. 

It’s very important to note that, you can’t just go get a COVID test anywhere you want. Hawaii government made it clear that they only accept the testing result from their list of trusted partners.

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Table of Contents  [show/hide]

    Hawaii's Vaccination Exception Program

    Good News: Starting June 15th, you can travel between islands without the need to do any COVID testing or quarantine. This applies to everyone regardless of their vaccination status or where they were vaccinated. See below under Interisland Travel Testing/Quarantine Requirement

    Before June 15th
    , the
    Vaccine Exception Program allows inter-county travelers that have been fully vaccinated against COVID-19 in the State of Hawaii another option to bypass the State’s 10-day traveler quarantine.


    It is important to note that this program is currently
    only for people who are vaccinated in Hawaii and those travelers are considered fully vaccinated on the 15th day after the completion of their vaccine. Therefore, if you are fully vaccinated somewhere else other than in Hawaii state, at the time of this writing, you are still required to undergo the pre-travel COVID testing as outlined below in this article until further notice from the Hawaii government. 


    Interisland Travel Testing/Quarantine Requirement

    Good news! Governor of Hawaii David Igne signed a proclamation that officially ends the inter-county Safe Travels program at midnight on June 14th. This means that starting June 15th, you can travel between islands without the need to do any COVID testing or quarantine. This applies to everyone regardless of their vaccination status or where they were vaccinated. 

    It is still important to note that, this applies only to inter-island travel. Visitors arriving from the mainland are still required to undergo the pre-travel COVID testing as outlined below in this article until further notice. 

    Hawaii's Pre-travel COVID Trusted Testing Partners

    While there are several COVID testing partners that Hawaii accepts, I personally find that Walgreens Rapid Diagnostic Test (ID Now) is the simplest and fastest way to get COVID test result for traveling to Hawaii.

    With Walgreens, you can typically have the result back in less than 24 hours which gives you ample time to fulfill Hawaii’s 72 hours before departure requirement. The downside about Walgreens COVID testing is that not every town or major city offers the Rapid Test type. Walgreen just recently offered the Rapid Testing in my town. You can also try to travel to a neighboring city too if possible. You don’t have to be a resident in a state to get the test with Walgreens.


    How to Get Walgreens COVID Test

    First of all, go to this Walgreens website and check to see if Rapid Diagnostic Test (ID Now) is offered in your area. You want to see the Red Dot that says Rapid Diagnostic Test (ID Now). This type of test is accepted by the Hawaii government. 



    • Step 1: Check your flight information. Note down the airport, departure date, and time of your last flight into Hawaii. For example, if you leave from Salt Lake City to Seattle to Honolulu, the flight information you need to keep note of is the last segment from Seattle to Honolulu. 
    • Step 2: Use this calculator and determine when is the earliest date and time based on your Hawaii-bound flight's departure time zone that you will be doing the COVID testing to comply with Hawaii’s 72 hours before departure requirement. Keep in mind that, it is within 72 hours (including time zone) of your last segment Hawaii-bound flight. 
    • Step 3: Once you know the necessary date and time, it is important to understand how scheduling Walgreens Rapid Testing works. 
      • You can only schedule online here and you can only schedule 3 days before your desired testing date. 
      • It is also possible that some testing site’s appointments can be filled up pretty fast. So be proactive and set a reminder. I notice that the appointment slots can open 4-3 days prior, so I would start checking 4 days beforehand, especially in the evening time. This is to ensure you see a lot of time slots that work best for you. 
      • On the Walgreens COVID testing website, click on Get started button to go through a series of questions and your health insurance information. If you do not have insurance, the system will still allow you to proceed too. According to Walgreens, if the state or your insurance company does not cover your testing fee, it will cost you $129 for the Rapid Diagnostic Test. 
    • Step 4: After the scheduling is complete, you’ll receive two emails. One email is just an acknowledgment of your appointment, the second one is your actual testing appointment’s confirmation. The second email is the one that you will need. 
    • Step 5: Be sure to bring an ID and your confirmation email to the testing site on the day of your testing. You can either print out that email or show it on your phone. 

    That’s it! The testing process is really simple and well streamlined. You must do a drive-through, you can’t walk into Walgreens to do the test. You’ll be instructed accordingly by the Walgreens agent to perform the test.

    Wait for your test result via email. If it’s positive, you should cancel the trip. If it’s negative, congratulation! But you are not done yet, you must upload the result to Hawaii's safe travels website that I'll walk you through below.


    Hawaii's Safe Travels Online Program

    Once you have received your negative COVID testing result, you must do the following:

    • Download and save your lab's negative test result in a PDF file from your email. 
    • Go to Hawaii's Safe Travels Website
    • Create an account. Please note that the name must match the name including your middle name/initial on your lab result. Just to be on the safe side - if your lab result does not have a middle name/initial, then don't include it on the safe travel site when you create an account. 
    • Sign in and follow the screen to create your profile such as your name, occupation, etc., and accompany travelers under the age of 18 if applicable.
    • Enter your trip details such as flight and lodging information. 
    • [UPDATE June 2021] Thanks to a reader Michael in the comment section letting me know that the Safe Travels interface has been updated, so I have modified the following instruction step to upload your test result document accordingly. 
    • After your trip details are submitted, click on Home at the top, which will take you to a page that you will see Apply for Exemption/Exception from Quarantine icon. Click on it and go to COVID NAAT/PCR Test Exception to start uploading your negative COVID test result pdf file that you downloaded in the first step.  

    How to Get Walgreens COVID Test For Traveling to Hawaii & How Alaska Airlines COVID Pre-Clear Program Works

    How to Get Walgreens COVID Test For Traveling to Hawaii & How Alaska Airlines COVID Pre-Clear Program Works

    At this point, once your test result is successfully uploaded, you are done with Hawaii's Safe Travels registration. 

    There's one more step you have to do!

    Complete Mandatory Health Questionnaire

    I promise this is the last step!

    24 hours before your Hawaii-bound flight, you must complete a mandatory travel health questionnaire. I love that Hawaii's Safe Travels site also sends a reminder when it is time for you to complete the health questionnaire. This step is required to receive your "clearance" QR code. 

    • 24 hours before your Hawaii-bound flight, go to Hawaii's Safe Travels Website
    • Click on Health Questionnaire
    • Answer each question on the questionnaire such as are you sick, have you had a flu vaccine, or have taken medication within the last 24 hours to treat fever, and so on. Accept the signature and click Submit. 
      • It is worth mentioning that, if you have had flu vaccine recently, there's no need to worry about saying Yes on the questionnaire. 
    • Once the questionnaire is submitted, a QR code will be generated and sent to your email address. 

    The QR code is your key to enter Hawaii. The QR code will be scanned when you arrive in Hawaii. You can show the QR code on your mobile phone by signing into the safe travels site and click on Trips. It is also recommended that you print the QR code out as well if you can. Rental car companies and lodging places also require the QR code to provide you any services. 

    If you are flying with Alaska Airlines, you can perform "Pre-Clearance" before the departure of your Hawaii-bound flight.


    How Does Alaska Airlines COVID Hawaii Pre-Clear Work?

    If you are flying with Alaska Airlines, they partner with the Hawaii government to offer COVID Pre-Clear program. The program allows you to clear COVID results screening before you arrive in Hawaii. Once you are successfully pre-cleared, you can simply skip airport arrival screening in Hawaii.

    How Alaska Airlines COVID Hawaii Pre-Clear Program Works


    To qualify for Pre-Clear before the departure of your Hawaii-bound flight:

    • Every adult traveler must have a Safe Travels profile.
    • All flight details and lodging info have been added.
    • Negative test results from a trusted testing partner have been uploaded as a PDF.
    • A mandatory travel health questionnaire has been completed.
    • It is also recommended that you bring printed copies of your test results and lodging confirmation with you.

    When you arrive at the departure gate for your Hawaii-bound flight, you can go see an Alaska Airlines agent and ask s/he to verify your Safe Travels profile to provide you a Pre-Clear wristband. Your Pre-Clear wristband will allow you to save the time upon arriving in Hawaii without going through the airport arrival screening process. The rental car company and lodging may still need to verify your Safe Travels profile through the QR code. Therefore, be sure to refresh your Safe Travels profile after receiving your Pre-Clear wristband to update your QR code. 


    What happens if my flight is delayed? Will it impact the 72 hours validity of my COVID test results?

    In the event of your flight is delayed or canceled - as long as your test results are uploaded or printed out and in hand before departure to Hawaii, you are fine. They will still accept that test result even your result is outside of the 72 hours before arriving in Hawaii due to the delay caused by the airline. This is what Hawaii's government said:

    You will not be subject to the State of Hawai‘i’s 10-day mandatory self-quarantine if your departure is delayed by the airline, and you complete pre-travel testing 72 hours before the departure time of the final leg of your flight to Hawai‘i and have a negative test result.


    For more frequently asked questions, check the official website here.


    Each Island's Second COVID Testing Requirement

    While all Hawaiian islands belong to the same Hawaii State, each island actually has different requirements when it comes to performing a second COVID testing, but this type of testing only occurs upon your arrival in Hawaii. In other words, if you successfully complete first Hawaii's pre-travel COVID testing that's been discussed in this article, you already finish the biggest first step in this whole process, and the only remaining test (the second test) that you need to pass is when you actually arrive in Hawaii. But not all islands in Hawaii require the second test. See below: 
    • Oahu: A second test is not required
    • Maui: A second test is required and performed upon arrival. You will also be required to participate in mandatory contract tracing. This information will all be provided upon your arrival in Maui. 
    • Kauai: A second test is not required. 
    • Hawaii, the Big Island: A second free rapid agent test is required and performed upon arrival. 

    For inter-island travel, please see Interisland Travel Testing/Quarantine Requirement section above. 

    Best Hawaii Resorts You Can Book For Free Nights With Points

    Hawaii can be an expensive destination to vacation. Fortunately, several hotels and resorts in Hawaii participate in many hotel chains such as IHG (InterContinental Hotels Group), Hilton, Hyatt, and Marriott which have reward points programs that allow you to use points to redeem for a free stay. Some hotel chains even offer credit cards that give you free night certificate(s) every year that you can also use to redeem for a complimentary stay in Hawaii. 
    If you like this post, please share it!

    PL

    Posted by: PL

    Hello there! People call me PL and I am a points blogger. Obsessed with using points and miles to elevate travel experiences to explore the world. Enjoy finer things in life and good food. I have a day job, this points blog is mainly my hobby and my contribution back to the points community. If you enjoy reading this post, please help me share it! If you enjoy what you read here, please make sure you subscribe or follow this blog on social media so that you will be notified when there's a new blog's post. I thank you for reading this blog. Your support means a lot to me and it is what makes this blog's work worthwhile. If I can be of any help, you can contact me: thepointslife at gmail dot com

    If you enjoy what you read here, you can also buy me a beer :-)

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    10 Comments

    Hello -
    I am in CA and this article is confusing to me with regards to the Walgreens testing and what the state will accept. No where that I can see does it specify the RED DOT test. Can you please clarify where you are getting this information? I have our appointments with Walgreens (free) set up for Friday morning for our Monday morning departure (within the 72 hours).
    PL said…
    Hi Thomas, the RED dot refers to Rapid Diagnostic Test (ID Now) that is offered by Walgreens in select areas/state only. The reason I suggest that test because you can get result really quick under 24 hours. Unfortunately this type of test is not offered everywhere. I just did a quick look for CA, it does not appear that Walgreens offer that Rapid test there. It’s okay if you already have a schedule with Walgreens for their regular test (non-rapid), just make sure that you get result in time for your Monday flight.
    Unknown said…
    Hi PL! I just had my Walgreen’s rapid diagnostic test done. It’s negative yay! And it does say that it was a NAAT type of test. My only fear is Hawaii not accepting this test because it is unclear ( to me) that it was done at. CLIA. Did you actually have this test and were admitted to Hawaii?
    I promise to buy u a beer if I get to Hawaii!!!
    Herly.
    PL said…
    Hi Herly, congrats on the negative test result. It shouldn’t matter which clinical service that Walgreens uses to do the test for you. As long as you got the rapid test at Walgreens in the timely manner, you should be fine! Be sure to upload the result, etc. to Hawaii Safe Travel and complete required health questionnaire as indicated in my article. Enjoy Hawaii! Have some Mai Thai for me :)
    Anonymous said…
    Hello! Thanks for the informative post. When I upload my negative results under the Hawaii safe travels website, it’s asks if it is a provider form or a Hawaiian form. I would assume since I am not currently in Hawaii that it would be the provider form but I am not sure. Do you know?
    PL said…
    Hello, yes it would be the provider form not Hawaiian form. Congrats on getting this far.
    Anonymous said…
    Hi! Thanks for the help! Any suggestions on where to take tests once there to travel between islands?
    PL said…
    Hello, when is your inter-island travel date? The reason I ask this because starting June 15th, you are no longer required to do any testing/quarantine for traveling between islands. Please see the Interisland Travel Testing/Quarantine Requirement section in this article.
    MichaelJJ said…
    Quick question, is your blog up to date with respect to the documents upload page? Mine looks different than the screen capture you have above.
    PL said…
    Hi Michael, thanks for letting me know. You are absolutely right, the Hawaii Safe Travel site has been updated to reflect new information on vaccination pertaining to document uploads. So on the home page now, there's an "Apply for exemption/exception from Quarantine" section where it asks you to upload the document for your test result under "COVID NAAT/PCR Test Exception". I'll update the post to reflect this new information.