comscore Kokua Line: Do all airlines pre-clear passengers for Hawaii’s Safe Travels program before departure? | Honolulu Star-Advertiser
Hawaii News | Kokua Line

Kokua Line: Do all airlines pre-clear passengers for Hawaii’s Safe Travels program before departure?

Question: We just returned to Hawaii from Florida. The “pre-clear” Hawaiian Airlines did at their Orlando gate was a godsend! An agent checked our vaccination cards, IDs and QR codes, put an orange wristband on us, and we were good to go! Once we landed in Honolulu, there was a separate line for passengers with wristbands like us, and we walked past hundreds of other people without any stops, just as we would have done pre-COVID. Are other airlines doing the “pre-clear” thing, too? Honestly, I can’t imagine how people can start their Hawaii vacation standing in line for what must’ve been two hours!

Answer: Yes, Hawaiian, United, Alaska and Southwest airlines all offer Safe Travels pre- clearance to passengers flying to Hawaii, according to the state, although the process might not be available from every departure city. Pre-clearance can make for a more pleasant arrival in the islands for returning residents and tourists alike.

As you described, passengers who use this service receive a wristband signifying that they’ve met the requirements of the Safe Travels program before they board the plane to Hawaii. Upon landing they proceed directly to baggage claim or ground transportation.

We’ve heard from other Honolulu residents pleased that pre-clearance was offered on their flight home. Besides easing their exit from the airport, they said it was reassuring to see so many fellow passengers wearing wristbands, signifying that they had tested negative for COVID-19, were vaccinated in Hawaii or were otherwise exempt from quarantine upon arrival.

Passengers who are not pre-cleared must get in line once they land in Hawaii, to verify that they have fulfilled the Safe Travels requirements.

Q: Are all of Oahu’s satellite city halls open on Saturdays now?

A: No, four of nine locations are. “The Downtown, Hawaii Kai, Pearlridge, and Windward City satellite city halls are offering extended service hours on Saturdays from 8 a.m. to 4 p.m. to serve customers who need to renew driver’s licenses, learner’s permits or state identification cards. No other satellite city hall services are offered during these special Saturday hours,” according to the Honolulu Department of Customer Services.

Appointments are recommended and can be made through the AlohaQ system at alohaq.org. Standby serv­ice also is available, but not guaranteed.

All of Oahu’s satellite city halls and driver’s licensing centers will be closed Monday, in observance of the July Fourth holiday.

Q: People collecting unemployment have to search for three jobs a week and keep a written log of their contacts. But online postings often don’t list a specific person to apply to, or sometimes even the name of the business; it’s more about the type of work. How do we log that?

A: Print a copy of the job posting and your application for the opening, and keep it with your written contact log, according to the state Department of Labor and Industrial Relations.

Q: Is there a number to call for people who don’t speak English and have questions about the vaccine?

A: Yes. To connect with a translator, call 586-8332 or toll-free 833-711-0645. This serv­ice is available Monday through Friday from 7:45 a.m. to 4:30 p.m., according to the state Department of Health.

Mahalo

Mahalo to the person who turned in my Visa credit card to the Enchanted Lake Safeway in June. I couldn’t believe I was that lucky to have had you find it! You have restored my faith in people. I really hope something wonderful happens for you and that your good deed comes back to you tenfold. Mahalo nui! — M.J.M.


Write to Kokua Line at Honolulu Star-Advertiser, 7 Waterfront Plaza, Suite 210, 500 Ala Moana Blvd., Honolulu 96813; call 529-4773; fax 529-4750; or email kokualine@staradvertiser.com.


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