Hawaiian Travel Update: What Does This Mean for Aulani?

in Disney, Travel

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The state of Hawaii recently announced new travel regulations for summer tourists. So far, Hawaii has had just 835 confirmed cases of COVID-19, significantly fewer than most other states.

On June 10, Hawaii Governor David Ige released the latest Hawaiian travel restrictions, including an extension of the island state’s mandatory 14-day quarantine for all arriving travelers.

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Credit: Paul Hiffmeyer/Disney Destinations

Yesterday, June 24, Governor Ige said in a statement, “We are working on an alternative to the 14-day mandatory quarantine that would allow a safe and healthy way for travelers to return to the islands. Today I am announcing that beginning Aug. 1, we will implement a pre-travel testing program for travelers to Hawaii as an alternative to the 14-day mandatory quarantine.”

Hawaii visitors who have had an FDA-approved PCR test from a CLIA-certified laboratory within 72-hours of arrival on Hawaiian soil will not have to quarantine. No virus testing will be available at the airport.

Currently, Aulani, A Disney Resort and Spa in Ko’Olina and Disney’s Grand Californian are the only Disney Vacation Club properties to have not announced a reopening date. Other DVC properties, such as the DVC resorts at Walt Disney World and Disney’s Hilton Head Island Resort and Disney’s Vero Beach Resort, have already reopened to Guests.

Credit: Disney Vacation Club

After Governor Ige’s announcement yesterday, Aulani‘s website was updated to reflect new cancellation and reservation change policies:

“UPDATE: June 24, 2020 – Aulani Now Waiving all Disney-imposed Change/Cancellation Fees for Reservations with Arrivals Through July 31, 2020

While there is still much uncertainty with respect to the impacts of COVID-19, the safety and well-being of our Members, Guests and employees remain Aulani Resort’s top priority. In line with direction from health experts and government officials, Aulani, A Disney Resort & Spa is currently closed and a reopening date has not been identified. We will continue to carefully evaluate this complex and fluid situation

To provide additional flexibility, we are waiving all Disney-imposed change and cancellation fees up to the date of check-in for reservations with arrivals through July 31, 2020. For upcoming reservations booked through The Walt Disney Travel Company, call (866) 443-4763 to reschedule reservations to a future date.

Upon reopening, Aulani Resort rooms, restaurants and other locations may be limited in capacity and subject to restricted availability or closure based on direction from health experts and government officials to promote physical distancing. Furthermore, experiences, services and amenities may be modified, have limited availability or may remain closed. Offerings are not guaranteed. We will provide more information as it becomes available. We reserve the right to cancel any reservations or purchases and provide applicable refunds.”

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Credit: Disney

It is possible that Hawaii’s new COVID-19 testing travel rules, which go into effect on August 1, will play a role in Aulani’s reopening date.

Like other Disney properties worldwide, it is unlikely that all activities and experiences will be available when Disney’s Aulani resort reopens. Disney character meetings are likely to be suspended and Aunty’s Beach House may not be available for childcare at the resort.

Information about the popular lazy river, beach gear rentals, and celebrations of Hawaiian culture, such as the luau, have not yet been released.

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Credit: Disney

When do you think Aulani will reopen? Do you believe that Hawaii offering travelers a way out of quarantine beginning in August will speed-up the Aulani reopening process?

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