United Airlines to offer Covid-19 testing for some passengers

Daniel Fowler
September 28, 2020

On Thursday, United announced that beginning October 15, passengers traveling from San Francisco to Hawaii can either take a rapid test at the San Francisco International Airport (SFO) or a self-collected, mail-in test ahead of their trip.

You have the option to pay either $90 for results within 36 hours or $150 for same-day results, the airliner said.

If you are looking to avoid being quarantined in Hawaii for up to 14 days due to COVID-19, United Airlines and Hawaii Airlines are looking to make it easier on you by offering same-day COVID-19 tests at the airports.

The airline worked closely with Hawaii officials to ensure that any United customer-both visitors and Hawaiian residents returning home-who tests negative on either test would not be subjected to the state's current 14-day quarantine requirement, according to the companies. Hawaiian's initial labs will be operational near Los Angeles (LAX) and San Francisco (SFO) global airports, with more testing locations coming soon at its other United States mainland gateways.

The airlines said it will fly at no more than 70% cabin capacity through October to allow for greater distancing in flight. The airport tests will be Abbott ID NOW molecular tests, administered by GoHealth Urgent Care and partner Dignity Health at a site inside the SFO worldwide terminal, with results promised in "approximately 15 minutes".

In addition to offering convenient testing, Hawaiian has implemented a health and safety program that covers all aspects of the flight experience. In addition, the airline may also be thinking about opening testing centers at airports in the USA and Canada.

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United did not cite prices in its announcement or respond to questions about the cost of testing.

Meanwhile, the airline has teamed up with Color to supply the mail-in test option for gathering earlier samples.

United's mail-in tests are self-collected and administered by Color, which texts or emails the results to travelers.

15, people headed to the airport will have the option of getting their test done ahead of time or waiting until the last minute-either by completing a self-collected, mail-in test before their trip or taking a rapid COVID-19 test at SFO.

The essential weekly guide to enjoying the outdoors in Southern California. "We're grateful to the state of Hawai'i for its partnership in developing the pre-travel testing program".

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