Beginning February 1, United customers traveling to Hawaii who have a valid negative COVID-19 test can show their results before boarding to save time and skip document screening lines upon arrival. The new pre-clearance process will be in place for customers traveling on 110 of United's weekly flights to Hawaii.
United is also making it easier to get the right tests to avoid Hawaii's 14-day quarantine by making approved COVID-19 tests available to all customers traveling to the islands no matter where in the U.S. their travel begins.
“We're making it easier for customers traveling to Hawaii to spend more time enjoying their trip and less time waiting in lines,” said Toby Enqvist, chief customer officer at United. “Testing is the key to opening domestic and international travel so we'll continue to lead the way in rolling out solutions that are simple and safe so our customers have what they need when they take their next trip with us.”
To begin the pre-clearance program, customers will enroll in Hawaii's Safe Travels program and complete Hawaii's COVID-19 questionnaire within 24 hours from departure. Next, customers will use the Safe Travels website to upload their negative test results from one of Hawaii's trusted testing partners which must be taken within 72 hours of their departure. At the airport, customers will see a United team member at the gate for their flight to Hawaii where they will receive a wristband if they qualify to bypass airport screening in Hawaii. Customers who have been pre-cleared will be able to skip test screenings in Hawaii and begin their trip as soon as they land.
United is also making it easier for customers to obtain approved COVID-19 test options with the expansion of mail-in tests to customers no matter where in the U.S. their travel originates. The airline will notify customers in advance of their Hawaii trip to let them know what testing options they have locally. Last year, United also teamed up with XpresCheck to open additional same-day testing facilities for United customers in select airports. XpresCheck currently has locations open in United's Denver terminal, and expects to open additional locations in United's terminals in Houston and Newark in the coming weeks. Customers who choose to take a test with XpresCheck can schedule an appointment online for a rapid molecular test on the same day as their travel. Walk up appointments are also available on a first come, first served basis.
Since the COVID-19 pandemic began, United made numerous enhancements to its business that improve the travel experience and make the airline a better company. Earlier this week, United announced a new Travel-Ready Center in the United app and online where customers can review COVID-19 travel requirements, find local testing options and upload any testing and vaccination records that their destinations requires. This year, United also began allowing all customers to fly standby on another flight to the same destination on the same day for free, and all MileagePlus® Premier® members now confirm a new flight on the same day to the same destinations at check-in when space is available in the same fare class. Last year, the carrier eliminated most change fees, pledged to reduce its greenhouse gases 100% by 2050, and as a part of its United CleanPlus℠ program, teamed up with Clorox and the Cleveland Clinic to guide its cleaning and safety protocols. Last spring, United extended MileagePlus Premier status to all customers through January 2022 and made earning status for the next two years easier for all MileagePlus members.