Kauai Will Allow Visitors to Quarantine Within Resorts—if They Wear a Tracking Device

At approved properties, guests will be able to move around in their “resort bubble” during their mandatory quarantine.

Kauai Will Allow Visitors to Quarantine Within Resorts—if They Wear a Tracking Device

A new “enhanced movement quarantine” will give guests access to the entire resort—versus being confined to their room.

Courtesy of Timbers Kauai Ocean Club & Residences

Kauai mayor Derek Kawakami signed an emergency rule on September 15 that allows guests to have access to an entire hotel or resort facility during their mandatory quarantine—versus being confined to just their room.

In an effort to contain the spread of coronavirus, all travelers arriving in Hawaii must quarantine for 14 days following their arrival—and the state’s quarantine rule is quite rigid. The quarantine order requires visitors and residents to proceed directly to their designated quarantine location after leaving the airport, where they are to remain for 14 days (or for the duration of their stay in Hawaii, whichever is shorter).

For visitors, the designated quarantine location is their hotel room or vacation lodging, and they are not to go to any public spaces, including pools, fitness centers, and restaurants. Failure to comply is considered a misdemeanor and is punishable by a fine of up to $5,000, or up to one year of jail time, or both.

The new Kauai rule offers a bit more flexibility for those determined to vacation on the Hawaiian island, allowing them to move around in their “resort bubble” during the 14-day quarantine as long as guests and the resorts agree to certain stipulations and safeguards.

Hawaii’s quarantine requirement was initially supposed to end on August 1, but it was then pushed back one month to September 1, and most recently Hawaii Governor David Ige announced it would finally be lifted on October 15. When it is lifted, visitors to Hawaii will be able to provide proof of a negative COVID-19 test result to avoid the otherwise mandatory 14-day quarantine that has been in place since March 26.

Strap on that security bracelet


Hotels will need to have proper security and enforcement plans in place to be approved to operate “resort bubbles.”

Courtesy of Ko‘a Kea Hotel and Resort

One of the most notable caveats of the new Kauai rule is that guests must agree to wear an electronic monitoring device. The rule doesn’t specify exactly what kind of device it must be; it just says that it must be wearable and have the ability to detect removal of the device.

Hotels and resorts will need to provide airport shuttle service for those taking advantage of the “enhanced movement quarantine,” as the new Kauai protocol is called, and will also need to have plans in place to reduce the contact of those in quarantine both with visitors outside of their travel party and with hotel staff.

Guests will be responsible for all the related costs, including for the monitoring, lodging, potential isolation (if they test positive for COVID-19), and any associated care.

Those who violate their enhanced movement quarantine are to be reported to Kauai’s police department and will face the same potential fines and penalties as those who violate the state order.

To participate, hotels and resorts must submit their intent to do so to the Kauai Emergency Management Agency, which will review the property’s safety, security, and enforcement plans to ensure that they are compliant.

Travelers should check with any property that they are interested in staying at in Kauai to find out whether it has been approved to participate.

Other destinations using monitoring devices


On the Cayman Islands, a BioButton allows travelers to shorten their quarantine to five days.

Photo by Shutterstock

Kauai isn’t the only destination implementing wearable monitoring device systems as a method for tracking arrivals during the pandemic.

The Cayman Islands, which is beginning a phased reopening of its borders on October 1, 2020, will be requiring all arrivals to quarantine for 14 days. The option is to either quarantine in a government-approved facility or in a pre-approved residence and wear an electronic monitorning device that will ensure that you remain at your designated quarantine location.

Singapore, Hong Kong, and South Korea provide arrivals with wearable devices not for tracking symptoms Travel Weekly reports, but—as with Kauai—for ensuring that people are abiding by the quarantine rules.

>> Next: You Can Now Visit Hawaii Without Quarantine Starting October 15

Michelle Baran is the senior travel news editor at AFAR where she oversees breaking news, travel intel, pandemic coverage, airline, cruise, and consumer travel news. Baran joined AFAR in August 2018 after an 11-year run as a senior editor and reporter at leading travel industry newspaper Travel Weekly.
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