Traveling To Hawaii? You Must Have A COVID-19 Test Within 72 Hours Of Your Final Flight. Traveling To Florida? Do Whatever You Want.
BY: ANDREW COLTON | Editor and Publisher
MAUI, HI (BocaNewsNow.com) — I’m writing this article on a 48 hour business trip from Florida to Maui and back. As our readers know, I help many of the nation’s leading trial attorneys assist their critically injured clients better communicate their stories — everyone from traumatic brain injury victims to quadriplegics, children who suffer birth injuries to senior citizens who are victims of medical malpractice. My work reduces the expense and strain of trial while helping attorneys, mediators, judges and insurance companies understand the true impact of a victim’s personal disaster.
What no one can understand, however, is the disaster that continues to unfold in Florida. Specifically, the epic lack of leadership from Florida Governor Ron DeSantis — and the death and destruction it has caused. If you look at the COVID policies in both states — Florida and Hawaii — you begin to understand what could have been in the Sunshine State, and what now will never be.
In Hawaii, everyone works to “Malama,” or “take care.” There is a sense that residents and visitors are a part of one big ‘Ohana,” or “family.” In Florida, there’s a sense that everyone should take part in something called “Fun Unlimited.” You often hear residents and visitors shouting the Fun Unlimited initials — “F-U!” — as they don’t wear masks, as they pack bars, and as they complain. In Florida, there is no need to worry about anyone else.
To travel to Hawaii, one must obtain a negative COVID-19 test no more than 72 hours before the final leg of your flight — and that test can only be conducted at a location authorized by the Hawaii Department of Health. In South Florida, the options are few, but a Walgreens in Oakland Park provides Hawaii-approved rapid COVID-19 testing. Your result must be uploaded — and verified — by the State of Hawaii before you get on the plane, or you’ll be ordered to isolate the minute you disembark. How serious is Hawaii? A couple was just arrested upon landing for knowingly traveling to the state while infected with COVID. Their young child was turned over to the state’s department of family services.
In Florida, anyone can travel to the state whether infected or not. The DeSantis administration couldn’t care less.
In Hawaii, airline passengers are met by heavily armed officials — displaying both guns and thermometers. They direct you to a health check station. You must provide identification, proof of your negative COVID test, the QR code sent to you after you uploaded your COVID test and provided other health information, proof of your reservation for lodging, and proof of your return ticket unless you live in Hawaii. If anything is missing, if anything isn’t approved, if anything seems suspicious, you will be ordered to quarantine for 14 days. The State of Hawaii has made it clear: anyone who violates quarantine faces arrest. Police check up on those ordered to quarantine several times a day. Visitors must also show proof of clearing the health check before they are permitted to rent a car or check-in to a hotel. Think any of this isn’t enforceable? Search “Hawaii COVID arrests” to see how Hawaii Governor David Ige works to keep his state safe.
In Florida, Governor Ron DeSantis works to promote voodoo science, saying masks do nothing and social distancing isn’t needed. In Florida, no one cares where you go or what you do. Wear a mask or don’t. Governor DeSantis has stripped all local governments of the ability to enforce public health guidelines and rules.
In Hawaii, police stop people who aren’t wearing masks. In Florida, police can’t do that. But they do enforce open container laws.
In Hawaii, the positivity rate is 2 percent. 242 people have died. 18,117 have been infected. In Florida, the positivity rate is hovering at 10 percent. 1,039,030 people have been infected. 18,994 have died.
For the latest Hawaii travel rules, click here. For the latest Florida travel rules, just look at a blank piece of paper.
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