Hawaii sets reopening date for bars, theaters, but not tourism

Certain businesses have been given the green light to reopen on Hawaii — but tourism is not one of them.

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Governor David Ige confirmed on Thursday that movie theatres, gyms, bars and other establishments will be allowed to reopen on Oahu June 19, Hawaii News Now reported.

One industry that does not seem to be reopening any time soon is tourism.

One industry that does not seem to be reopening any time soon is tourism. (iStock)

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Oahu will be reopening facilities that day after the Governor approved a city plan this week. The reopening comes after Hawaii has flattened its curve, reporting only two new cases as of June 4, the Health Department reports. Though the businesses will be capped at 50 percent capacity and have to create an environment that adheres to social distancing. Those that are reopening are also reportedly increasing sanitization efforts with frequent disinfecting of high-touch items.

However, one industry that does not seem to be reopening any time soon is tourism.

As of Wednesday, Gov. Ige has not offered a concrete timeline of when tourists would be allowed back to the island, and said it may begin with opening up to international travelers first, Hawaii News Now reported.

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“I looked at the stats yesterday the United States as a country had 15, 20,000 new cases and you look to Japan, all of Japan had 33 new cases and all of Korea had 35 new cases, so from my perspective the travel bubbles are establishing corridors to communities with similar virus risk and similar virus activity,” he said to the outlet.

"We err on the side of protecting the public health. That’s what we do in an emergency,” he added.

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Emergency instances aside, the phased reopening of the Hawaiian islands will come in stages, beginning with inter-island, domestic from the mainland, and then international. The last phase will be to create a screening policy that will replace the mandatory quarantine, which is in effect for inter-island travel until June 16 and for mainland and international travel until at least June 30.

Meanwhile, other popular tourist destinations like Las Vegas and Orlando are starting to ease restrictions and welcome back visitors — while still adhering to certain precautions like reducing capacity and maintain social distancing of guests.