HONOLULU (AP) — Hawaii’s tourism industry officials are having a mixed reaction to Gov. David Ige’s call that people not travel to the islands due to an increase in COVID-19 cases. 19.
The governor made the comments Monday as hospitals across the state fill with record numbers of coronavirus patients.
“It’s a risky time to travel right now,” Ige said. “We know now is not the right time to travel to the islands.”
Hawaii Tourism Authority officials plan to discourage travel, the Honolulu Star-Advertiser reported Tuesday.
“Our community, residents and the visitor industry are responsible for working together to address this crisis,” said John De Fries, president and CEO of the organization. “As such, we strongly advise visitors that now is not a good time to travel, and they should postpone travel until the end of October.”
But other industry players are reluctant to put the brakes on after the economy rebounded with an easing of restrictions in early summer.
“I have thousands of people booked to come by 2022,” said Jack Richards, president and CEO of Pleasant Holidays, a Hawaiian travel company. “I’m definitely not going to contact them and say, ‘Don’t go.'”
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