When it comes to traveling, I often decide where to go just before the departure, depending on my feelings, but this time I was able to decide a month and a half ago!
Preparing to Enter the U.S.
“We’ve got our flights, we’ve got our accommodations, and now all we have to do is wait for the flight to leave!”
The New Normal is not to be.
It has been about half a year since my last visit to the U.S., so I proceeded to search the Internet, hoping that the required documents and inspections had been eased. As it turned out, little had changed (or had they become somewhat stricter?). However, since this was my second time, I knew the ins and outs of the process, so my understanding and preparations proceeded smoothly, and in less than an hour I was done with the preliminary preparations and PCR test appointments both for entry into the U.S. and for return to Japan.
At this time, the following three items are required to go to Hawaii other than a passport and a valid visa.
|1) PCR test + Negative Certificate||Tested within 1 day of departure and obtained a negative certificate.|
When I called the inspection clinic and confirmed, it did not have to be within 24 hours. In other words, even if the flight departs at night, the inspection in the morning of the previous day is ok. It’s really annoying that the rules for this part are different depending on the country or state.
|2) Vaccination Certificate||The app produced by a Japanese government is ok.|
Since the app was not yet developed at the end of last year, the ward office issued an English version of the paper certificate. I was asked to show it at every restaurant, so I couldn’t travel abroad without a vaccine passport. How about Hawaii in the summer?
|3) CDC Requested Documents||Previously, the CDC (Centers for Disease Control and Prevention) request document was only a “pledge”, but this time it is a “pledge” + “contact tracing form”.|
The previous lessons live here: early preparations fail. Last time, the version was revised many times before departure, and each time there was wasteful work of printing and re-signing.
Selecting a PCR Testing Center
Check out my favorite blog for recommended PCR testing centers. This blogger travels back and forth between Tokyo and Hawaii several times a year and is my most reliable source for the most recent immigration restrictions and requested documents.
In his May 19th blog, he wrote about his travel from Haneda to Hawaii and said he booked a quick inspection at the Kinoshita Group’s PCR inspection center at Haneda Terminal 1.
Unfortunately, we are departing from Narita Airport this time, so I proceeded to search the Internet and found Narita International Airport PCR Center, but while Kinoshita Group’s quick inspection is listed at 2,600 yen, Narita International Airport PCR Center is listed at 23,000 yen.
I didn’t do a detailed comparison, but dismissed it instantly!
I contacted the next place that came up, Pikapaka PCR Quick Test Center, and decided that I could go to Shimbashi the day before departure for 9,480 yen with a negative certificate for Hawaii.
It is less than half the cost of the test / negative certificate when my husband went to Hawaii in December 2020. I don’t want to get a market view of this kind of thing, but it’s difficult to decide without knowing the standard at all, so it has become easier in that respect.
I also booked the PCR test required for entry into Japan at Wellness 4 Hawaii, a place also recommended by my favorite blogger. It was also inexpensive! Compared to the cost of the test in San Francisco at the end of last year, it was less than one-third the price.
The explanation on the website is all in Japanese, and after I added them as my LINE (chatting app) friends, I was able to complete the reservation in no time at all. By the way, the messages from them are also in beautiful Japanese. It’s so easy.
So, the preparation for this COVID-19-measure departure went so fast that I feel like it took me much longer to write this blog.😂
Well, the troublesome and sober, but essential preparation work is done!
Now it’s time to have fun gathering information while reading lots of Hawaii magazines until our departure!!